Even as a three-member committee was appointed by the Supreme Court to look into the claims for compensation for the soon-to-be demolished illegal residential complexes in Kochi’s Maradu municipality, reports revealed on Sunday (October 6) that there are no valid ownership records for as many as 140 flats.
According to a report on Manorama, owners of nearly 40%, or 140 of the total 360, flats in the four illegal apartment complexes have not obtained proper ownership records. The apartment complex face demolition for the violation of the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) norms.
Meanwhile, the flat owners are submitting claims for compensation at the Maradu municipality office, on the basis of which, the municipality will submit to the government a list of owners who are eligible for the interim compensation. The three-member panel appointed by the apex court will work on the list of the residents eligible for the compensation.
The report said that the interim compensation of ₹25 lakh will be given to only the registered owners of the flats, and those who have inherited or were handed over the property on basis of contracts will not be eligible for the compensation. Further, compensation will also not be given to deemed owners of the flats that are still under the name of the builders.
The three-member committee led by Justice K Balachandran Nair will look into the validity of the documents submitted by these flat owners. Meanwhile, the crime branch of Kerala Police, who have been probing the case, on Saturday (October 5) raided the offices of three of the four builders involved in the illegal construction of flats.
It may be recalled that the Supreme Court had in May ordered the demolition of the apartments following an appeal filed by the Kerala State Coastal Zone Management Authority (KSCZMA). On September 25, the Supreme Court had ordered an interim compensation of ₹25 lakh to the flat owners within four weeks.
Demolition date yet to be fixed
The final date of the demolition, to be carried out through controlled explosion, of the flats is yet to be fixed. A technical committee has been appointed to the monitor the demolition and is set to submit a report to the authorities on Monday (October 7).
Kochi Sub-Collector Snehil Kumar Singh said that the demolition will be carried out after examining the reports. He added that insurance will be provided to all the surrounding buildings, and will be evacuated for a few hours during the demolition process.
As per a report on Mathrubhumi, Vijay Steels and Edifice demolition contractors are among the companies that have been listed for carrying out the explosion. The companies were directed conduct an elaborate study to determine how to go ahead with the demolition, the methods to be used, the environmental impact and the pollution of the place. They were also asked to submit a report regarding this within 15 days.
Reports said that the contract for the demolition will be given only after studying the report and that there will be no underground explosion.