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Jung slaps notices on PWD, Chief Secy over mohalla clinics on foothpaths

In yet another conflict between the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) dispensation and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-ruled North Delhi Municipal Corporation, Lieutenant Governor (LG) Najeeb Jung has issued notices to Chief Secretary and the public works department (PWD) over mohalla clinics, which are allegedly being constructed by the department without the civic body’s permission. The LG's intervention comes after it was approached by the civic body.

The matter was raised during the North MCD’s Standing Committee meeting last week, during which its members had alleged illegal construction in the name of mohalla clinics. The members had claimed that these clinics were being constructed on public spaces like footpaths under its jurisdiction and posed a danger to public safety, following which the committee directed its officials to remove the structures. 

“The MCD departments concerned have already issued notices to the PWD to remove the structures, being built in the name mohalla clinics, as they encroach upon public space. These structures being built on footpaths, pose a danger to pedestrian safety.

In the last meeting, we gave fresh directions to check illegal construction in the name of mohalla clinics and demolish them immediately. We had approached the LG too. Now, we have informed that the LG has issued notices to concerned persons/authorities in this regard,” said Pravesh Wahi, chairman of the Standing Committe.

During Standing Committee meeting on Wednesday, the members pointed out that even the permanent structure coming up for these clinics were built without approval. The committee also directed that engineering department to ensure that no building is constructed without a prior approval of the building plan by a competent authority. 

A senior official informed the committee that notices had already been served to the PWD and other agencies  concerned for the removal of these structures.

“We are not against mohalla clinics but the structures, housing the facilities, should not pose a danger to public safety,” said a member. 

Leader of the Opposition, Mukesh Goel, said footpaths should be encroachment-free. “We must act against these illegal structures built in the name of mohalla clinics in a same way as the corporation acts against the common-man,” he added.
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