CM lobs balls in AG court as BMC hammer swings down


Mumbai: The BMC hammer looks set to fall at Worli’s Campa Cola society at 11am on Tuesday even as chief minister Prithviraj Chavan decided late on Monday evening to seek the opinion of India’s top law officer, attorney general Goolam Vahanvati, in the matter.
Chavan declined to promulgate an ordinance to save the 96 illegal flats across seven buildings in the society. However, a
senior bureaucrat said the government might allow residents to retain membership of the society so that they can buy a flat in case of redevelopment in future or urge the state to give them a MHADA tenement.
“We expect the AG’s opinion to come in a day or two. But the BMC will go ahead with its plan to demolish illegal floors starting Tuesday,” a senior bu
reaucrat told TOI. Vahanvati said, “So far, there is no written request…Once I receive it, I will certainly apply my mind and give an opinion.” Vahanvati had appeared for the BMC in the case in the SC.
Anticipating opposition from residents, who have said they will block the entrance, a company of the Rapid Action Force and 200-odd police personn
el will be deployed at the spot. Over nine BMC teams, each comprising 10 to 15 persons, and 200 labourers will set to work vacating the flats and cutting off supplies.
Monday was the SC’s deadline for residents to move out. Occupants of only 11 flats had left at the time of going to press.


At 11am on Tuesday, a 90-member civic contingent, along with 200 labourers, 200 police persons and 1 RAF company, will be at Worli’s Campa Cola society to cut supplies and initiate demolition proceedings
The SC eviction deadline for residents of 96 unauthorized flats ended on Monday
Only 11 flats had been vacated till late Monday evening. The remaining residents said they wanted to be in their homes for the maximum possible time before losing them

Water, power, gas supply to be cut first at Campa Cola

Water, power and gas supply to the 96 illegal flats in Campa Cola society will be disconnected first on Tuesday and doors and windows of the flats removed, a senior bureaucrat said.
“Actual demolition may take place starting Wednesday,” the bureaucrat said, adding that the BMC’s standard operating procedure would be followed in the matter.
But Mohan Adtani, additional municipal commissioner, said the internal walls of a few flats would also be pulled down on Tuesday itself.
Adtani said the demolition team comprising engineers, electricians, plumbers, gas supply cutters, officials from the water department and the G (south) ward officer will enter the premises at 11 am.
Before that, at 10am, Worli police will barricade the area around the society and
prevent entry of vehicles into the lane leading towards the society.
BJP leader in the BMC Dilip Patel on Monday requested the residents to co-operate with the BMC, but the residents said they were determined to block the entrance to the society.

Adtani said if residents refused to vacate flats, police would invoke a section of the Indian Penal Code that says citizens can be booked for preventing public servants from performing their duty.
Asked if BMC workers would help residents to remove their belongings, he said,

“SC had given them enough time for that. Residents will not be allowed to remain in the flats at 11am.”
On Monday, chief minister Prithviraj Chavan held a meet with Union minister Milind Deora, minister of state for housing Sachin Ahir, leader of opposition Vinod Tawde and Shiv Sena Rajya Sabha MP Anil Desai to take stock of the situation. Earlier in the day, Chavan had told TOI he would discuss the issue with leaders of all parties. “Last week and even on Monday, I discussed the SC order. I was told promulgating an ordinance will be against the spirit of the order. However, I was told that if the illegal flats are demolished, we can help the occupants retain membership (of the society), and they can be accommodated in future if there is redevelopment,” he said.
The state also felt that if an ordinance was promulgated, the state would have to issue a general amnesty order for all illegal buildings in the city. “Chavan had taken strong exception to such a proposal. He observed that at a time when he had taken on erring builders, such a step would damage his image,” the bureaucrat said.

Source : Times Of India