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Dear All,
Message for Structural Engineers in INDIA
Sub : Download Supreme Court Notice on Unsafe Buildings
Recently there has been considerable commotion in the engineering profession over a news item published in many newspapers about a public interest petition (PIL) filed in the Supreme Court by the Society for Safe Structures in Delhi.
As requested by many members the same has been put on the website, which may be downloaded. Please visit the website : For giving your views/ suggestions click on "Comments" on the website.
The respondents of this PIL filed under Article 32 of the Constitution of India, are
1. Union of India
2. Ministry of Urban Development
3. Ministry of Human Resource Development
4. Delhi Development Authority
5. Municipal Corporation of Delhi
6. Bureau of Indian Standards
7. Council of Architecture
8. Institution of Engineers (India)
9. Consulting Engineers Association of India
10. Association of Consulting Civil Engineers (India)
11. Indian Association of Structural Engineers

The highlights of the PIL are :·

There is violation of fundamental right to life under Article 21 of the Constitution of India·
Constitutionality and legality of actions taken by Respondent 1 and its functionaries (Respondents 2-7) and inaction of Respondents 8-11, in allowing continued construction of structurally unsafe buildings which are unable to withstand earthquake forces and other natural hazards in the hands of incapable and incompetent persons, has been questioned·

Collapse and damage to most recently constructed buildings could have been prevented if prevalent Building Bye-laws / Development Regulations by local/municipal bodies had been stringent and properly drafted with respect to earthquake safety norms, guidelines, codes of practice and parameters of safe design prescribed in the National Building Code had been adhered to·

National Building Code has not been made mandatory·

Structural Engineers have no legal responsibility for their design·
There is almost no involvement of qualified engineers in most building design & construction in private sector·

DDA / MCD are aware of kingpin role of Structural Engineers but have evaded the same for Delhi Building Bye-laws and favour architects·
Despite unambiguous and explicit purpose of Architects Act 1972, there is negligent attitude and misuse of its constitutional and statutory duties & powers SUPREME COURT PIL ON UNSAFE STRUCTURES The petitioner has requested the Supreme Court to issue writs to :

1. Ensure respondents take appropriate actions;
2. Ensure implementation and enforcement of the National Building Code ;
3. Constitute a Committee to frame guidelines for preventive repair/ retrofitting;
4. Constitute a Committee to frame guidelines for setting up Structural Safety Commission;
5. Make appropriate Regulations & bring Techno-legal regime for safe, sound and stable earthquake resistant buildings;
6. Include a chapter on safe & economic construction of buildings at 10 + 2 level as part of Social Studies curriculum;
7. Not to give effect to revision of Building Bye-laws till disposal of this petition;
8. Quash sections 2(1) (xii) & 2 (1) (xvi) of Architects (Professional Conduct) Regulations 1989;
9. Quash “Standard Scale of Remuneration for Architectural Services”
10. Quash “Guidelines for Architectural Competitions”11. CBI should enquire into the conduct of Council of Architecture
Bhavin Shah
Hon. Secretary
IAStructE, Gujarat State Centre