TCP amendment bill passed amid Opposition walkout





The state legislative assembly on Monday passed the Goa town and country planning (amendment) bill 2018, pushing ‘transferable development rights’ and change in zoning of land into the TCP Act.

The bill was passed despite the Opposition being insistent on referring the bill to the select committee.

The ruling coalition defeated the demand of the Congress by 21-15 when the bill was put for the division of votes.

The Opposition MLAs walked out of the House when Speaker Pramod Sawant moved the bill for passage.

The House witnessed heated arguments during the discussions on the bill.

Opposition leader Chandrakant Kavlekar demanded that the bill be referred to the select committee. However, Town and Country Planning Minister Vijai Sardesai pointed out that the Opposition has not moved any amendment to the bill. Hence it should be passed.

‘Accommodation reservation’ and ‘transferable development rights’ are planning tools for balance development, Sardesai stated adding that the insertion of new Section 16B for changing of zone in the Regional Plan on case-to-case basis will give relief to the common people.

“This is a progressive amendment as regards the development of the state, and will give relief to the common people,” Sardesai reckoned.

Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar said the government will constitute a committee for drafting rules on the amendments, and that certain Congress MLAs and some experts will be part of that committee.

Congress legislator Aleixo Reginaldo Laurenco said that there is confusion in the minds of the people vis-à-vis the TDR policy, calling for its reference to the select committee.

The bill amended Section 2 of the existing Goa Daman and Diu Town and Country Planning Act, 1974, by introducing new definitions of accommodation reservation, transferable development rights and transferable development right for posterity.

The bill will allow the government to acquire land for public purposes without incurring expenditure due to compensation, besides enabling the government to charge processing fees and fees for change of zone, which will generate revenue for the state government.

Deputy Speaker Michael Lobo and MLA Nilesh Cabral opined that the amendments will be beneficial to the common people.