Can’t increase plot area by extending roof: High Court - ECAS Punjab

Can’t increase plot area by extending roof: High Court

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Saurabh Malik

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 25

In a significant judgment that will change the way house owners carry out expansions of floors above the ground level, the Punjab and Haryana High Court has made it clear that the overhanging projection such as balconies and rooms cannot be constructed beyond the plot size.

Justice Anil Kshetarpal also made it clear that a developer cannot claim exclusive rights over a common use passage described as a street in a sale deed. The judgment comes at a time when balconies, structural canopies and other projections hanging over roads has become common.

The judge ruled that a purchaser or an owner does not have the right to extend the projection on the first floor beyond the area purchased by him and that also over a public street. Besides, a developer who has carved out a market and kept a passage for common use before describing it as a street in a sale deed cannot subsequently claim that the area was for his exclusive use.

The matter came to the HC's notice after two regular second appeals were filed by the buyer and the developer. The Bench was told that developer Ram Saroop, who carved out a market on a piece of land, claimed he had kept a private passage and the buyer had no right to construct a projection covering half its width.

The Bench was also told that buyer Rajinder Kumar after purchasing a single-storey shop constructed the first floor with a two-and-a-half-ft projection above the open space claimed by the builder to be a private street.

Justice Kshetarpal ruled: "Once a co-owner of a piece of land/plot decides to develop the same into a residential or commercial area, certain space has to be left for common utility. Once some area has been earmarked for common utility, the owner cannot claim any exclusive right over the area so reserved or earmarked for common utility."

Justice Kshetarpal added the buyer, Rajinder Kumar, too was not having the right to construct the first floor in a manner that it encroached upon two-and-a-half-ft area overhanging above the street. "In the absence of a specific right or custom or usage, the plaintiff-buyer cannot, as a matter of right, claim that he has entitlement to extend the area of the plot on first and the second floor by extending the roof," the judge ruled.

from The Tribune

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