64 flats are vacant in Rangpur’s Tk 50 crore building
Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) has 64 flats lying vacant in a building costing Tk 50 crore. For a month, not two months, but a year. Because there is no elevator in the building.
North City has constructed a 13-storey building near Sony Cinema Hall in Mirpur section 1 of the capital for its regional office and staff accommodation. Office space has been kept up to the fifth floor. 64 flats have been built from sixth to 13th floor. The flats are to be rented out to Class III and IV employees.
According to city corporation documents, construction of the building started in 2017. In March 2019, the work up to the fifth floor was completed. The rest of the work was completed in October 2021.
At that time the contractor conveyed the building to North City. More than a year has passed since then. The purpose for which the flats were built was not fulfilled.
An employee of North City Region-2, on condition of anonymity, told Prothom Alo that the flats are ready. They are unable to stay there due to negligence in buying a small lift. Having to live elsewhere with higher rent. Again the city corporation is also deprived of rental income.
The building has a total of 64 flats, 32 each for Class III and Class IV employees. Class III employee flat size is about 850 sq.ft. Each flat has three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a kitchen and living and dining room space. Class IV employees flat size is 700 sq.ft. There are two bedrooms. The rest of the facilities are like flats for Class III employees.
On visiting the building on November 30, it was seen that doors and windows have been installed in the flats. has been painted All work is completed. But as there is no lift in the building, one has to climb the stairs. The North City Regional Office (Zone-II) was opened in the building without a lift in the second week of October last.
Talking to the concerned people, it is known that the delay in installation of the lift is due to the delay in the initiative and the contractor not completing the work on time. The City Corporation took over the building in October 2021. And the work order was given to the contractor to purchase the lift last February, that is, four months after the building was taken over. The contractor was supposed to deliver the lift by September 18. But the contractor has not yet delivered or installed the lift.
A contractor named Roshan Elevator has received the order to purchase the elevator. Its General Manager (GM) Sheikh Salauddin told Prothom Alo, “The time allotted in the work order is not enough to import an elevator. We got six months. But it takes 9 to 10 months. He said that the lift has reached Chittagong port. Installation may take another month and a half.
City corporation officials say that the process of purchasing the lift should have been started before the construction of the building was completed, so that the construction of the building could be installed after completion. But that didn’t happen. The contractor is also late.
Power Circle of North City Engineering Department is responsible for buying lifts. The supervising engineer of this circle, Rafiqul Islam, told Prothom Alo that the process of buying the lift was started when the authorities gave the order.
North City will deduct the rent allowance from the salaries of those who will be allotted flats in the new building. Employees of North City said that the house rent in third and fourth class is 13 thousand to 15 thousand taka. It means, on an average, the city corporation was earning 14 thousand taka per month from the rent of a flat.
It can be seen that due to the fact that 64 flats are vacant in a year, North City has suffered a loss of 1 crore 7 lakh 52 thousand taka.
Not only this building of the City Corporation, some buildings constructed by various government agencies in Dhaka are lying empty. For example, five multi-storied buildings have been constructed in the wood factory area of Mirpur Section 6 of the capital to facilitate the accommodation of officials of the rank of Deputy Secretary of the Government. Most of the flats in these buildings have been vacant for two years. Officials are not keen to go there.