More strin­gent of two DCRs will ap­ply to stalled projects

The Times of India (Mumbai edition) - - TIMES CITY - Mo­hua.Das@ times­group.com

When they go for fur­ther per­mis­sions to com­plete their build­ings, they are asked to come un­der the new rules. It is not pos­si­ble to fol­low the stip­u­la­tions of the new 2034 DCR, es­pe­cially when you have just one or two floors of the build­ing to com­plete,” said a source in the real es­tate in­dus­try. A devel­oper said it would be dif­fi­cult to com­ply with the new DCR con­di­tions at a stage when his build­ing is al­most com­plete.

An­other prom­i­nent devel­oper said the build­ing pro­pos­als de­part­ment was not even ac­cept­ing pre­mium pay­ments for con­struc­tion con­ces­sions. “I have to pay Rs 50 crore as pre­mium for my project, but it’s all in limbo,” the devel­oper told TOI.

Sources said the state should have come up with a tran­si­tion pol­icy for projects that started un­der the old 1991 DCR. “Since two weeks, there’s a to­tal shut­down in the BMC’s build­ing pro­pos­als de­part­ment. Ju­nior level of­fi­cials do not know what to do,” said a prom­i­nent ar­chi­tect.

BMC chief en­gi­neer (de­vel­op­ment plan) San­jay Da­rade said he has held meet­ings with his en­gi­neers and given in­struc­tions on how to scru­ti­nise pro­pos­als. “There is no is­sue,” he said. Da­rade said the more strin­gent of the two DCRs will ap­ply to build­ing pro­pos­als in tran­si­tion. Early this week, the BMC is­sued a cir­cu­lar that all pro­pos­als will now be pro­cessed as per the new DCR through the on­line sys­tem.

The BMC ini­ti­ated the de­vel­op­ment plan of 2034 and pub­lished the draft DP on Fe­bru­ary 25, 2015. How­ever, since there were a lot of anom­alies, it was scrapped. The sec­ond draft DP along with DC reg­u­la­tions was pub­lished in May 2016 and sug­ges­tions and ob­jec­tions were called. The fi­nal plan was pub­lished on May 8, with some of the clauses added in Ex­cluded Por­tion (EP), which was not sanc­tioned and fur­ther sug­ges­tions and ob­jec­tions were called for. “Since Sep­tem­ber 1, there are many Ex­cluded Por­tions within the new plan. There is chaos in the en­tire build­ing pro­posal de­part­ment,” said a devel­oper.

The roads are clogged with Ganeshot­sav cel­e­bra­tions and the traf­fic chaotic. Mov­ing at a snail’s pace, when you fi­nally reach the ho­tel in Cuffe Pa­rade, al­most 45 min­utes late, the OBE-awarded In­dian multi-in­stru­men­tal­ist Baluji Shri­vas­tav shows no signs of an­noy­ance. In­stead he smiles as he clutches your hand warmly and leads you to a chair next to him. OBE, for the unini­ti­ated, stands for the much­cov­eted UK hon­our, Or­der of the Bri­tish Em­pire.

Stylishly at­tired in a leop­ard-print shirt and beige trousers and sip­ping on mo­jito seated across his singer-song­writer wife Linda Shan­son, Shri­vas­tav speaks in an en­thused voice, never look­ing away from his lis­tener for even a sec­ond.

The 68-year-old, who ex­cels in sitar, sur­ba­har, dil­ruba, pakhavaj and ta­ble, has ac­com­pa­nied Ste­vie Won­der in Hyde Park and Cold­play at the Par­a­lympics clos­ing cer­e­mony, and recorded with An­nie Len­nox, Mas­sive At­tack and Oa­sis, was only eight months old when he was di­ag­nosed with glau­coma and has lived with­out sight ever since.

For Shri­vas­tav, what could be worse than hav­ing no sight is hav­ing no vi­sion. So, apart from per­form­ing be­fore world lead­ers and with the best of mu­si­cians, to­gether with his wife he founded Baluji Mu­sic Foun­da­tion in 2008 and later the In­ner Vi­sion Or­ches­tra–the UK’s only or­ches­tra of blind and vis­ually im­paired mu­si­cians—in­spired by the 11th chap­ter of the Bha­gavad Gita that ex­plores the in­ter­play be­tween light and dark­ness. The or­ches­tra arose from find­ings in a sur­vey re­port ti­tled ‘Blind to the Facts’ that Shri­vas­tav had com­mis­sioned in 2015 to look into the needs of blind and par­tially sighted mu­si­cians in the UK for the Arts Coun­cil of Eng­land. It iden­ti­fied the need for more per­for­mance op­por­tu­ni­ties for mu­si­cians in par­tic­u­lar who found it more dif­fi­cult than sighted mu­si­cians to do the es­sen­tial net­work­ing re­quired to find work. “It’s very dif­fi­cult to find blind mu­si­cians be­cause they’re hid­den, of­ten not know­ing that peo­ple want to find them and be­cause of the UK’s data pro­tec­tion pol­icy,” says Linda. “So, we’d talk to blind peo­ple on the streets, at meet­ings and events, and push them gen­tly.”

To­day, this project, which earned Shri­vas­tav the OBE in 2016, works ac­tively in ad­dress­ing the im­bal­ance in much of the Bri­tish mu­sic in­dus­try and tries to in­still in dif­fer­ently-abled mu­si­cians the con­fi­dence to pur­sue mu­sic in­de­pen­dently. On Mon­day, Shri­vas­tav and his priv­i­lege.” His flair for mu­sic, he claims, came along since he was two, “sing­ing along with AIR, at wed­dings, and mak­ing mu­sic with cups and bowls”.

At six, he was placed in the Gwalior Blind School and soon be­came an as­set for the in­sti­tu­tion when he picked up the sitar, out­per­formed older kids and started con­duct­ing the or­ches­tra at nine, hav­ing de­vised a non-vis­ual way to com­mu­ni­cate with his fel­low mu­si­cians us­ing a xy­lo­phone. “Ev­ery time I hit a spe­cific note it con­veyed a spe­cific in­struc­tion—louder, softer, faster, slower,” he ex­plained. Shri­vas­tav worked as a mu­si­cal demon­stra­tor in shops when a chance en­counter with a French tourist and his cu­rios­ity about the sitar took Shri­vas­tav to Belvedere in 1981, and then to Paris, where he met his artiste wife, and later to Lon­don where he set­tled down.

With 200 mu­si­cians en­rolled with the foun­da­tion now, out-of-town con­cert calls see an army of 10-20 mu­si­cians from dif­fer­ent coun­tries, three guide dogs and a bun­dle of in­stru­ments trav­el­ling out of Lon­don loaded with sounds that strad­dle Iran, Le­banon, Afghanistan, In­dia and Nige­ria, to gospel, blues, ra­gas and Western clas­si­cal. And it’s not just about the joy of play­ing; Shri­vas­tav also finds ways to im­part life hacks to those with low vi­sion. “I re­cently dis­cov­ered a way to take self­ies and make record­ings of our own mu­sic,” he gushes.

Shri­ram Vernekar

Baluji Shri­vas­tav (hold­ing sitar) with fel­low mu­si­cians in Mum­bai

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