The state government, in what could be one of its last decisions, with the enforcement of the election code of conduct for the forthcoming state assembly election round the corner, has extended the period for ongoing regularisation of unauthorised structures scheme by one month.
According to this decision, the people desirous of availing the benefits of the regularisation of unauthorised scheme as envisaged under the Regularisation of Unauthorised Structures and Encroachments Act, 2015, would be able to do so for one more month. The scheme was supposed to end on December 23, 2016.
Till date, a total of 2,190 applications had been received by the revenue department under this scheme. Quepem leads the list with 614 applications followed by Pernem (499), Bardez (211), Salcete (286) and Ponda (174), besides other talukas.
Deputy Chief Minister Francis D’Souza, who also holds the Revenue portfolio, coming out with this information told ‘The Navhind Times’ that the main reason for extending the duration of the scheme was to allow maximum number of people to apply under the scheme. “We know that not many people were able to apply under this scheme as there was lack of awareness about the same, as also the time available was limited,” he maintained, stating that the government also wanted to prevent the limited time for the scheme from becoming an election issue. “But people are still applying, and we would know if the applicants will be really benefitted, once we take up scrutiny of the applications,” he added.
As per the available information, there are over 30,000 to 40,000 unauthorised houses in Goa, which could be regularised as a ‘one-time measure of relief’ with one-time fee/ penalty for the house owners.
As per the Act, the owners will have to pay entire taxes of conversion fees, infrastructure tax, occupancy fees plus the construction licence fee, besides a penalty of five per cent on the total amount.