- Residential building construction in Dhaka requires 13 clearances, residential project 17
- Rajuk responsible for approving the building design
- Making city corporation another approving agency unacceptable and illogical, say realtors and planners
- They say the move contradicts government's easing business mentality
Additional approval from city corporations for the construction of structures in Dhaka city in addition to approval from the Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha (Rajuk) will add to existing hassles and sufferings, according to urban planners and realtors.
"People have to endure sufferings and bribe Rajuk to get their construction plans approved. After Rajuk, if they now have to go for approval by the city corporations, their sufferings will certainly be doubled," said Adil Mohammed Khan, former general secretary of the Bangladesh Institute of Planners (BIP).
Local Government and Rural Development (LGRD) Minister Md Tajul Islam on Sunday said that constructions in Dhaka will require city corporation approval in addition to a go-ahead by Rajuk before they can be undertaken.
The remark subsequently drew criticism as realtors and planners termed it illogical and unacceptable. Adil Mohammed Khan said the existing construction approval now needs to be simplified and time saving. But the minister's plan will only make it more complicated.
He said if the government has any issue with Rajuk, the public agency could be dissolved or merged with the two Dhaka city corporations.
"The minister's proposal sounds like double taxation. While the government is committed to reducing public sufferings by using digital technology and ensuring investment-friendly business, such statements by the minister are conflicting and undesirable," he noted.
Construction of a residential building in the capital now requires different clearances from 13 public agencies such as Rajuk, fire service and Dhaka Water Supply and Sewerage Authority. For a residential project, the number of clearances rises to 17.
Alamgir Shamsul Al-Amin, president of the Real Estate & Housing Association of Bangladesh (REHAB), said the move for additional approval contradicts the government's easing of business attitude.
"After lengthy efforts, we were able to reduce the number of construction monitoring agencies to four from 13. There is no logic in adding a new one now. We have enough of problems in this regard."
The REHAB president also said city corporations currently do not have the required experience and manpower that Rajuk took 50 years to build on.
"The more the government gets involved, the more will businesses suffer," he warned, adding, "Businessmen need more room to run operations smoothly."
Naimul Hassan, deputy managing director of real-estate company Hassan and Associates Limited (HAL), said the real-estate sector is already caught in the Dhaka Detailed Area Plan (DAP) dilemma.
"Meanwhile, what the minister has proposed is nothing but to pour water on a drowned mouse," he lamented.