Monsoon might bring some relief to the residents of Campa Cola compound as the government is likely to ask the BMC to not demolish the illegal homes in the plush complex during rains. The issue was discussed at the Maharashtra cabinet meeting on Friday, where Naseem Khan, guardian minister (Mumbai suburbs), demanded that the norm where demolitions were halted during monsoon for slums and dilapidated buildings on humanitarian grounds be applied to Campa Cola residents too.
Other Mumbai ministers, including Varsha Gaikwad (Congress), and Sachin Ahir (NCP) backed his suggestion. Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan later hinted that this relief could be granted.
The Congress, in a bid to score some political points, also pushed the idea to seek another opinion from the country’s attorney general on options that could be availed in granting permanent relief to the residents, while staying within the ambit of the law.
Initiating discussion on this in the house, Khan said action against residents was unjustified when there had been none against civic officials and the developer responsible for the illegal construction.
NCP ministers Chhagan Bhujbal and Sachin Ahir backed Khan’s suggestion to approach the attorney general. Congress sources, however, said there was intense political pressure on Chavan to offer some permanent relief to the residents. During the Assembly proceedings on Friday, BJP legislator Devendra Phadanvis lashed out at Chavan for “not exercising options that could be availed.” He claimed that tools were available to ensure that barring an illegal portion of 1,176 sqm, other complex could be legalised.