Devoted environmental activist, Srisuwan Janya, currently serving as President of the Stop Global Warming Association, has persistently fronted a public outcry against the controversial Ashton Asoke luxury condo in the Watthana district of Bangkok. The contentious 50-story, 783-unit project recently had its construction permit rescinded by the Supreme Administrative Court. Srisuwan Janya, in representation of a close-knit community dwelling adjacent to the costly venture, scrutinizes the permit approval given to the development company, Ananda Development Plc.
As a consequence, the livelihoods of nearly 580 individuals who had invested in condo units within the building are thrown into disarray due to the court’s unexpected ruling. The relentless crusader, Srisuwan Janya, is also prepping to vicariously hold Governor Chadchart Sittipunt accountable, as he implores the Bangkokian politician to orchestrate a thorough investigation into the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) personnel who partook in the endorsement of the now-voided permit.
This ruling has sent tremors throughout the real estate realm as it could potentially impact at least 13 major housing developments and over a hundred retail outlets projects. These establishments employ the same legal loopholes as the Ashton Asoke project and may henceforth be vulnerable to similar sanctions.
Five years ago, the Stop Global Warming Association, partnering with 15 inhabitants from the neighboring Sukhumvit 19 Yaek 2 community, instigated a legal battle against the head of the Watthana district office and four of his associates. The feud was due to their sanctioning of the Ashton Asoke’s construction permit. Janya affirmed the responsibilities of additional BMA personnel from the building management and Traffic and Transport sections who might also have contributed to the egregious oversight.
An important factor cited within the court’s decision is the lack of a legal entrance way into the skyscraping structure. According to construction and building regulations, entrance ways to such high-rise structures ought to be at least 12 meters broad and must provide direct access to a public road, principally for safety concerns, such as potential fire emergencies.
The court also identified the unauthorized agreement between Ananda Development Plc and the Mass Rapid Transit Authority of Thailand (MRTA). The contract allowed the developer to employ a fraction of MRTA’s property as a makeshift entrance to the towering building. Despite the ruling, Ananda continued to maintain their innocence, claiming complete adherence to the law during their application process. The construction permit, they affirmed, was issued on November 17, 2017, to Ananda MF Asia Asoke Co. This is the joint operation handling the Ashton Asoke project. The affair, they argued, involved the approval of eight state entities before construction could commence.
However, Srisuwan Janya clarifies his intention to resort to the Anti-Corruption Commission if Governor Chadchart does not respond promptly. He vows to invoke their intervention against Chadchart on behalf of himself and all other affected parties.