In order to prevent encroachment of open space reserve land and ensuing legal battles with encroachers, the city corporation has submitted around 250 applications to the revenue department in the past two weeks to transfer OSR land pattas in the name of the civic body.
An official at the town planning section of the corporation said if a layout extending to 3,000 square metre or more is developed, the developer should earmark space for OSR land.
“Before 2019, layouts more than 2,500 square metre should have open reserve space. The OSR land should be handed over to the corporation, which should develop a park there. In the intermediate period, the corporation should protect the land.”
For the past two weeks, the town planning officials have been giving approval for layouts only if OSR land is transferred in the name of the city corporation. “As it was not mandatory earlier, many people started claiming ownership of such pieces of land. When the corporation tried to take possession of land, they moved the court.”
“There are a few pieces of OSR land from layouts developed in 1950’s and 60’s that require patta transfer. Most of OSR land from 1970’s and 80’s requires patta transfer,” he said.
Town planning officer P Kumar, when contacted, confirmed the development. He said around 250 applications have been submitted to the revenue department. “An amount of 400 needs to be paid along with each application. We have paid the fee for around 30 applications and the process is underway for the remaining applications.”
“Out of 2,111 pieces of OSR land in the city, patta transfer is completed for only a few hundreds of land that were developed recently. Work to transfer other pattas will be carried out in batches,” he added.
S P Thiagarajan, secretary of the Tamil Nadu Reserve Site Protection Committee, welcomed the move and urged the corporation authorities to identify all OSR land which have not been brought under the corporation. “OSR land should be allocated for large buildings such as theatres, hotels and malls too. But many such spaces were not identified.”