Sub: Delhi Master Plan violations on riverbed and ridge – requests re assessment / inquiry

Ref: ‘President to honour three architects’, IANS, June 7, on, and President’s Secretariat’s letter no.P1/B-221312 dated 11-Feb-2004 (saying my communication of 22-Jan-2004 has been forwarded to you for appropriate action)

‘the system’ seems to have collapsed to a point where our president can be ‘used’ to ‘endorse’ the very type of initiatives against which representations are pending appropriate action upon his direction. i believe this calls for said appropriate action with urgency... [11.06.2004]


As per above news item our President, with urban development minister, is / was to honour architects for projects that involve illegalities. It is sad that office of the President was misled into such a thing. I have written to him to apologize for the failure of the professions on this count and to Council of Architecture the that I request you to kindly peruse.

The President’s Secretariat had forwarded to you for appropriate action my letter of 22.01.04, which included a request to Standing Parliamentary Committee for Urban development for hearing of response to its invitation of 22.06.03 for views about DDA, with (at encl.1) a joint statement, in context of propaganda on a global platform against Indian law, courts and professions, calling for public debate on the emergent ‘endowment paradigm’ for city development contrary to the ‘entitlements perspective’ of existing law and (at encl.2) illustrative list of pending representations against its instances. The latter included violations of Delhi Master Plan (DMP) on ridge and riverbed, etc, subversion of DMP processes through ‘guidelines’, etc, and the crisis facing urban professional institutions.

‘The system’ seems to have collapsed to a point where our President can be ‘used’ to ‘endorse’ the against which representations are pending appropriate action upon his direction. I believe this calls for said appropriate action with urgency, also in view of the fact that President in his address to Parliament has said that the government will ensure that its agencies operate in a responsive and accountable manner, the government has made in the National Common Minimum Programme a solemn pledge to provide an administration that is responsible and responsive at all times, and the Supreme Court has rejected, with reference to s.41 of Delhi Development Act, the position that MoUD has unfortunately been taking vis-à-vis DDA and DMP violations (viz, that it is not implementing agency) and also the goings-on under its so-called ‘master plan guidelines’.

I specifically request with utmost urgency:

  1. Details of the inquiry that the High Court (in its judgement of 16.09.02 in WP 4978/2002) had directed DDA Chairman to make about the illegal ‘Sultangarhi scheme’ in green belt in ridge / CGWA notified area that MoUD reportedly ‘cleared’ in January 2004 as well as DDA’s report about over 1700 objections filed against the scheme in response to Public Notice in 2002 and about similar ridge area violations brought to the attention of MoUD in context of these objections, including now the ‘Garden of five senses’
  2. Response to my request (made on basis of necessary professional competence, expertise and experience and sustained professional documentation and engagement) for being associated with Pushta clearance evaluation, decision for which was taken at meeting of 03.01.04 that decided compliance of court order of 03.03.03 for clearance of all riverbed encroachments in two months would start with some Pushta slums, now that honour has been bestowed for in-situ rehabilitation of identically situated Secretariat that failed to respond even to requests for compliance of court order of 31.01.03 for school buses till examinations for children who, with Dr AV Baliga Trust, had also approached the President in January.

Yours sincerely

Gita Dewan Verma / Planner
cc: Mrs Ranjana Ray, Dr A V Baliga Trust