HC asks metropolitan planning panel to start functioning
Stating that the Bangalore Metropolitan Planning Committee (BMPC) should start functioning, the High Court of Karnataka has asked the committee to hold meetings at regular intervals to take decisions on pleas for change of land use as per the law and in the interest of the public at large. Disposing off the petition, which questioned the validity of Section 14-A of the Karnataka Town Planning and Country (KTCP) Act that allowed the State to grant change of land use, the court said the BMPC would also take decisions on requirement of change in use of public landthat were sold through auctions by the government.
In his order, Justice Hulavadi G. Ramesh also directed that BDA to submit all the applications received for the change of land use to the BMPC, which will have to take decision on these pleas in terms of Section 14 of the KTCP Act. “Section 14 of the KTCP Act may have to be followed as per the Comprehensive Development Plan even while effecting changes. So far as lands which are sold in public auction are concerned, it is a matter of concern for change in land use in accordance with law”, the court observed while noticing that the government had sold lands in public auction with a promise to the purchasers that it would grant permission for lands in agricultural zone to be used either for the residential or commercial purposes.
The court said that the constitution of BPMC as per Article 243ZE of the Constitution would curtail unbridled powers on the Executive Authorities on the grant of permission for the change of land use as the decision of the BMPC would prevail in this regard.
 Special Correspondent, HC asks metropolitan planning panel to start functioning, The Hindu, 4 (November 28, 2014).