UPDATE: Gupta’s ‘illegally’ built Saxonwold mansion unlikely to be demolished

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Ward 117 councillor Tim Truluck has told the Rosebank Killarney Gazette that despite community backlash, the Gupta mansion controversy was not uncommon in the ward.

“There was nothing particularly underhand about the appeal and this sort of thing often happens in the ward, so it’s not really such an outrageous issue. I don’t see that it will be refused by City council at the current stage.

“The residents who are opposed to the appeal have every right to object. If they do, a tribunal will be formed where both the appeal and the objections thereto will be heard. I am aware of only three past cases where council demanded for structures which have already been built to be demolished, the rest were all approved.”

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Tessa Turvey, chairperson of Saxonwold and Parkwood Residents’ Association has however stated her disapproval.

“Council has not followed through with their previous ruling from 2013 and the Gupta’s have continued living on the illegally built premises consequence free ever since. The initial plans for the construction of the new building was incorrectly approved, that is where the illegality comes in, and now they’re trying to legalise it again. We as residents will obviously object and follow due process.”

This is a developing story, more information will follow as it becomes available.

Gupta (Medium)

Initial report, 13 February 1.09pm

According to the Saturday Star, Joburg’s planning committee rejected the Gupta’s application to legalise home extensions on their property three years ago. The family has now applied to rezone their residence from ‘Residential 1, subject to conditions’ to ‘Residential 1, subject to further conditions’.

Saturday Star has reported that the Gupta family continue to live in the house and residents have told how the family entertain government ministers from time to time.

Rosebank Killarney Gazette previously reported about council meetings regarding the house. Saxonwold and Parkwood Residents Associations had, in 2013, raised objections to the illegal extensions of the house. At the time, a member of the residents association told the Gazette the media was making an issue where there wasn’t one. However, three years later, the issue has still not been rectified.

Accusations leveled against the Gupta family’s house in 2013 were that they had violated height restrictions, the number of dwelling units per site and contravened the Architects Act.

 

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