In another attempt to exercise control over land properties in Sri Lanka, the government today sought to amend the Town and Country Planning Ordinance to acquire lands for economic, social, historical, environmental and religious purposes within municipal and urban areas.
The amendment bill says that its purpose is to promote and regulate a system of integrated planning and development for securing proper infrastructure.
The National Physical Council to be established under the provision of this bill will give effect to the objectives set out in this bill. According to the bill, it is possible for the authorities concerned to declare land areas as conservation areas, protection areas, architectural and historical areas and sacred areas.
The subject minister can declare a protection area within an urban of municipal limit for the protection of natural amenities and a conservation area for the conservation of natural resources and the protection of places of natural beauty. An architectural and historical area can be declared in such areas for the conservation of buildings of architectural and historical value.
The proposed National Physical Council has the power to prepare national physical policies and national physical plans to achieve the objectives of the bill. In the acquisition of lands under the provision of this bill, it will not be considered whether there are buildings within them or not. (Kelum Bandara)