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HC directs Chennai Collector to remove illegal hoardings

By Staff
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Chennai, Apr 18 (UNI) Madras High Court today directed the Chennai Collector to take action forthwith to remove 1252 hoardings for which no application had been received for grant of license.

A Division Bench, comprising Chief Justice A P Shah and Ms Justice Prabha Sridevan, gave the directive while passing interim orders on a bunch of petitions on hoardings and posted hearing for April 20.

The bench said as per the Chennai collector's report dated March 30, 2006, around 2131 applications were received for regularising existing hoardings and 1617 applications were received seeking permission to erect new hoardings. The report said there were over 1252 hoardings which had been erected without applying for license.

The collector was directed to process the 2131 applications as per rules but orders passed on the applications should not be given effect to till further orders. On applications for new hoardings, they should not be processed till further orders, the bench added.

It was also made clear that the collector was expected to remove not only hoardings but also frames and supports of the hoardings. It was brought to the court's notice that in many cases, the person who had erected the hoardings had not paid the ground rent/ advertisement tax and there were huge arrears payable to District Collector as well as the Corporation as the Corporation was entitled to recover ground rent/advertisement tax upto June 2003. The Collector/Corporation was directed to issue notices to all agencies/parties in default of the ground rent/advertisement tax. If arrears were not deposited within a period of four weeks of service of such notice, the collector should remove hoardings including frames and supports of the hoardings, the bench added.

UNI XR AA KD KN2242

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