6 months to leave residential areas
The cabinet yesterday set a six-month deadline for the removal of all unapproved commercial entities operating in residential areas in cities across the country.
The decision came following a discussion on a report prepared by the local government and rural development (LGRD) ministry sketching out problems of the commercialisation of residential areas in cities.
If the commercial entities are not removed within the time, those will be shut down by the authorities concerned with the help of people, Cabinet Secretary Mohammad Shafiul Alam told reporters after the meeting at the Bangladesh Secretariat.
As per a cabinet decision made in June 2015, the LGRD ministry placed a set of recommendations in the meeting. The cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina approved those.
The recommendations include ensuring the use of basement or the underground floor of every building as car park.
Rajdhani Unnayan Katripokkha and city corporations will conduct join drives to clear the spaces in case those are being used for commercial purpose, the cabinet secretary said.
Secondly, the committee recommended cancelling the licences of bars in residential areas and that no new licence is issued.
The home ministry would take necessary steps in this regard, Shafiul said.
Thirdly, the committee proposed shutting down of all guesthouses and hotels in residential areas after six months, he added.
Rajuk, city corporations and national housing authorities will take actions jointly against such unauthorised businesses after the time effective from the day the decision was made.
Trade licences of those organisations issued by city corporations will be cancelled and their utility lines cut. The collection of VAT and taxes from those entities will also be stopped, said the cabinet secretary.
The suggestions were made to build planned cities across the country, he said, adding that the timeframe could be extended later, if necessary.