Akrama Sakrama is a scheme introduced by the Karnataka State Government to regularize the unauthorized buildings and layouts scheme. It is an effort to streamline the rampant illegal constructions in the state. The scheme enables the owners of plots and flats in Bangalore to regularize their buildings by paying a penalty.
What is the need of the Akrama Sakrama scheme?
The concept of illegal buildings is a sad reality of our country. An unprecedented growth in urban population is resulting in an ever-increasing demand for housing options in the cities. This is fuelling the growth of unlawful constructions. Many builders avoid regularizing their constructions in order to cut down on the costs or to sidestep the regulations.
In Bangalore, around 80% of the buildings can be slotted as illegal constructions. With the Akrama Sakrama scheme, the state government expects to bring about a change to this scenario.
What is new in the Akrama Sakrama scheme?
The Akrama Sakrama scheme is not a brand new ACT. It is the result of amendments to several Acts. The scheme is known as the Karnataka Town and Country Planning (Regularization of Unauthorized Developments) Rules 2013. It offers to regularize the properties which violate building norms instead of demolishing them. The ACT has undergone several updates till date. The Karnataka State Government re-introduced the ACT in 2015 after making statutory amendments.
Validity of the Akrama Sakrama scheme
The basic norms of the scheme
As per the Akrama Sakrama scheme, buildings which have violated the rules can be regularized against a one-time penalty. Once the penalty is paid, the owner can get a Certificate of Completion from the authorities. But there are certain conditions put forward by the civic body for regularizing the buildings.
According to the civic body, the buildings may be regularized only if the floor area ratio (FAR) violation is no more than 50% for residential buildings and 25% for non-residential buildings. Further, there are added conditions for setback violations.
Among the basic norms of the scheme are:
- If violations in residential buildings within the Bruhath Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) limits are within 25%, the penalty would be 6% of the total violated area’s market value.
- If violation exceeds 25% but is less than 50%, penalty would be 8% of the total violated area’s market value
- If the violation is beyond 50%, the building will be liable for demolition
- Market value would be determined according to the Karnataka Stamp Act, 1957
Implementation of the Akrama Sakrama scheme
The Akrama Sakrama scheme was passed in 2013 and it came into force on 23rd March 2015. The general public was given one year time, i.e. till 23rd March 2016, to fill up and submit the Akrama-Sakrama application form. But the response to this government scheme has not been good in Bangalore.
Many people are of the view that the scheme is a flawed one and provides an escape route to rich owners of buildings to get away with illegal constructions within the city. By paying a hefty fine, they can regularize the buildings that might have been built with low-quality materials or do not meet the safety standards. Some associations of residents in Bangalore have even filed PILs in the high court and demanded the scheme be abolished.
Now it remains to be seen whether the state government can successfully implement this scheme or introduce more changes to it after considering the general people’s views and demands.