Is Gurugram sitting on time bomb?

A major tragedy is awaiting in Gurugram as high-powered tension electricity wires are crossing over petrol pumps, reports PAWAN KUMAR BANSAL

Gurugram, a millennium city and hub of big corporate houses is actually sitting on time bomb. Forget the depleting groundwater due to illegal dewatering of groundwater by installing bore wells, construction hazard, unplanned disposal of waste and felling of trees, there is a major tragedy awaiting as high power tension wires of electricity department are crossing above the four petrol pumps situated in the city, thus posing serious threat to lives of its inhabitants.

The petrol pumps have been in existence for past eight years without any check by the authorities concerned of the Haryana government and the Fire Department of Haryana Government and Explosives Department of Central Government. Any time during the summer months of June and July, these poor quality electricity wires with multiple joints could spark resulting into major blast. Moreover, gas pipelines also exist in this area.

Official documents in possession of Tehelka have revealed shocking disclosures as how first rules were bent for granting permission for change of land use for setting up four petrol pumps on Southern Periphery road popularly known as Golf Course Extension road. Then no objection certificate was issued by the district administration for setting up the petrol pumps. Not only the state government agencies but the explosives department of the central government also ignored the fact that electricity wires are crossing over the petrol pumps.

The permission was granted during the tenure of Bhupinder Singh Hooda regime when he was the chief minister. What is shocking that the officers concerned are still ignoring the threat to lives of people. As per the procedure, Director town and country planning Haryana was supposed to cancel the change of land use permission granted for running petrol pumps as  high powered tension wires of electricity are crossing over them. Deputy commissioner Gurugram should have cancelled the no objection certificate granted for running petrol pumps and explosives department should have cancelled the permission granted for running the petrol pumps. Well, Director General explosives Faridabad is competent authority for this purpose.

At a high level meeting chaired by Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal, two years ago, it was decided to start the proceedings for the cancellation of the licenses of the petrol pumps and also for taking action againts the officers who had given permission for change of land use and no objection certificate however, no action has been taken till date courtesy clout of the owners of the petrol pumps who are believed to be close to a former chief minister of  Haryana.

A complaint was made to CM Lal against the four petrol pumps namely Renuka, Raminder Sindhu, Shalini Kampani and Navyug Fuels in sector — 62 and 65, along Golf Course Extension road in March, 2016. Chief Minister then asked for immediate inspection of these four petrol pumps at fairly senior level in the Directorate of Town Planning and factual position. Following which, District Town Planner (Enforcement),Gurugram, submitted his report after inspecting the sites .

On 19th October, 2016,Rajesh Khullar, Principal Secretary of Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal wrote on file: “As per the report of District Town Planner (Enforcement), Gurugram, all the sites are falling within the limits of the Municipal Corporation,Gurugram, and action against unauthorised construction is to be taken by the Municipal Corporation or Department of Urban Local Bodies and DTP(E) is required to transfer the record to M.C.G,Gurugram for taking further necessary action. Further No objection certificate from the Fire department and the Explosives  Department (Central Government) have to be obtained periodically by the owners of the petrol pumps for running the petrol pumps.The major objections should have come from these departments regrading the  presence of petrol pump installations within the influence zone of H.T Lines and hence not fit for sage operation. As recommended on NP/6 ,a reference may be made to Fire Department of Haryana Government and Explosives Department of Central Government for appropriated
action regarding the cancellation of No Objection Certificates and stoppage of functioning of the petrol pumps as per provisions in their Acts as all the petrol pumps are falling within the clearance zone of HT line and may not be fit for safe operation. Also the Chief Minister may be apprised of the actuation taken in this regard.”

Despite the orders were passed by Khullar, the file has not moved an inch till date. The question is who in the Government is protecting the interests of the owners of the petrol pumps?

Raman Malik,BJP spokesman told Tehelka, “It is shocking that change of land use and no objection certificate for running petrol pumps where HT lines were crossing was granted.Those officers responsible for granting change of land use and no objection certificate must be criminally prosecuted as they have played havoc with the lives of inhabitants of Gurugram. Malik also urged Chief Minister Manohar Lal to order a high level probe to identify the officers who are disobeying his orders.”

Rajiv Jain, media adviser of Chief Minister did not respond to the messages on sms and WhatsApp of Tehelka for their version. RK Sharma, retired IFS, officer of Haryana and crusader said that it was shocking, government must take action against those responsible for grant of change of land use and no objection certificate as they have played havoc with the lives of the people.

Anand Mohan, Principal Secretary, urban local bodies told Tehelka that change of land use was not granted by the Municipal Corporation Gurugram but by the Director of Town and Country Planning department.

Ved Parkash, District Town Planner (Enforcement),Gurugram also neither picked up phone nor responded to sms and Whatsup messages of Tehelka.

Now, let’s understand the procedure for getting permission for running the petrol pumps.First, change of land use permission needs to be taken from the Town and Country Planning Department or Municipal Corporation as per the area that falls under the jurisdiction of the department.Second, no objection certificates are needed from the Fire department, forest department, Food and Civil Supplies department,S.D.M of the area,Public Works Department,Municipal Corporation and Highway authority.Third, Deputy Commissioner issues no objection certificate after which maps are submitted to the Explosives department of the Central Government .But considering the clout of owners of the petrol pumps, who are close to a former Chief Minister of Haryana, all rules and regulations were violated.

On January 4, 2017, Khullar wrote on a file that the CM is surprised that office notes put by the department concerned have failed to fix responsibility of officers who issued occupation certificates after the HT line was in place. Khullar added that chief minister would like this to be done by 31st January 2017 positively. Shockingly, till date nothing has been done. Rajesh Khullar could not be contacted as he is reportedly on leave.

Now, read the comments of Managing Director of H.V.P.N.L: “According to noting on file it is submitted that the department does not allow constructions within the right way of HT Lines.The area within the ROW of HT lines is not included in the Zoned area.In the present case, all the four petrol pumps are within the right of way of 220 H.T.lines.Now Haryana Building Code 2016 has been made applicable in whole of the state w.e.f  ist July, 2016,as per the code -10 building shall not be constructed with in the clearance zone of High Tension electrical Lines and the clearance zone specified  for 220 KV,H.T Line is 35  meters, which is also ROW specified for 220 KV HT line.Hence structures cannot be permitted within the said clearance zone.

“Navyug Fuels of sector 62 ,Gurugram. The part of canopy and office building is failing within ROW of 220 KV.H.T line. Unauthorised construction has also been raised in ROW of HT line and beyond green belt in the form of shop in green belt. Smt.Shalini Kampani Sector -62,Gurugram. Almost half of the canopy area and office building is falling within ROW of 220 KV,H.T line. Raminder Sindhu. Sector 65.The toilet block has been unauthorised constructed in setback area and also in ROW 220 KV H.T line.”