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The Supreme Court Tuesday said the plight of Delhi residents was getting worse due to illegal construction and mushrooming of commercial activities in residential areas.

‘The plight of the people is worst because of illegal construction. People can’t go from one place to another place because residential areas are getting converted into commercial areas,’ said the apex court bench of Justice V.S. Sirpurkar, Justice P. Sathasivam and Justice G.S. Singhvi.

The court made these observations when senior counsel Mukul Rohtagi wanted to draw the attention of the court to the ‘plight’ of his client whose residential premises in south Delhi was sealed for commercial use.

The moment Rohtagi used the word ‘plight’, the court said that it was due to illegal constructions and commercial use of residential premises that the ordinary people were suffering.

In the instant case, the owner of a residential property, after the change in zonal master plan in 1997, got the permission from the civic agency to put half of the said property to commercial use.

Consequently, he put the basement and the ground floor of the premises to commercial use while retaining first and second floor for residential purposes.

However, the apex court-appointed monitoring committee took a different view saying that originally the premises was sanctioned for residential use and sealed it.

Rohtagi also wanted the Court to look into the functioning of the Monitoring Committee. He said it was acting as a super body and sealing different premises in an arbitrary manner.

Amicus curiae Ranjit Kumar said that if senior counsel felt aggrieved by the functioning of the monitoring committee then he could move an application to review its functioning. The court adjourned the matter for two weeks.

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