A house built illegally on forest land in Minh Phú Commune in Hanoi’s Soc Son District. (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNS/VNA) - The People’s Committee of Hanoi’s Soc Son district has asked the Minh Phu Commune People’s Committee to coordinate with relevant agencies in solving violations relating to illegal buildings on forest land by the end of November.

The owners of illegal buildings should take them down or local authorities would dismantle them by force.

To facilitate the work, a campaign has been launched with a view to raise local residents’ awareness on the issue.

As of November 5, five out of 18 buildings that were illegally built on forest land have been demolished by their owners.

Chu Tuan Thanh, who had a 79-sq.m house that was due to be dismantled, said his family didn’t comply with the authority’s request, saying the responsibility of involved individuals and organisations should be clarified before dismantling began.

Thanh said he and his wife bought 1,800 sq.m of forest land in 2004 and the land purchase was certified by the Minh Phu Commune People’s Committee.

When asked about resident’s response to violations, Nguyen Truong Giang, head of the Natural Resources and Environment Division, said the district authority hadn’t received people’s feedback in writing regarding the settlement of illegal buildings on forest land.

Earlier, Chairman of the Hanoi People’s Committee Nguyen Duc Chung asked for measures to address land use violations in Soc Son district’s forest land. Twenty-seven buildings including houses, villas and even an eco-tourism area with a swimming pool, stilt houses and concrete roads that were illegally built on forest land in Hanoi’s Soc Son district over the past two years must be dismantled by December.

Chung said at a meeting late last month that the city’s agriculture department and Soc Son district’s People’s Committee must contact the owners and tell them to take the buildings down.

The violations were detected in Minh Phu and Minh Tri communes, and since then the chairman of the Minh Phu Commune People’s Committee has been suspended for 30 days for alleged involvement in land use and construction violations.

After local media reported rampant land use violations and construction in the two communes, Hanoi authorities were prompted to examine the land use, land management and construction licences granted there.-VNS/VNA