The Bombay High Court Thursday directed the Mumbai civic body to file its affidavit in reply to petitions filed by stand-up comedian Kapil Sharma and actor Irrfan Khan challenging the notice issued against them directing razing of unauthorised structures allegedly constructed by them at their flats in suburban Goregaon.
A division bench headed by Justice N H Patil directed all parties involved to maintain status quo in the matter, which means the civic body cannot initiate action of demolition of the alleged illegal structure.
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On April 28, the civic body issued notice to Sharma and Khan under section 351 of the Mumbai Municipal Corporation Act, claiming that certain constructions in the 18-storey residential building ‘DLH Enclave’ in Goregaon, in which the actors have flats, were illegal and hence will have to be razed.
Apart from Sharma and Khan, another resident and the developer of the building Dev Land and Housing Private Ltd have also petitioned the high court. The high court today directed the civic body to file its affidavit in response to the petitions and posted them for hearing on December 8.
Sharma, in his petition, claimed that the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) notice was “bad in law” and issued with “mala fide intentions”.
The comedian had kicked up a controversy last month by alleging that he had been asked to pay a bribe of Rs 5 lakh by an official of BMC which, in turn, claimed that the actor had flouted norms not only in his Versova office building but also at his apartment in suburban Goregaon.
“In March and April 2010, the civic body issued commencement certificate to the developer granting permission to construct the 18 floors. On November 6, 2013, the corporation issued Full Occupation Certificate to the building,” Sharma said in his petition.
However, on November 14, 2014, BMC’s assistant engineer from Building and Factory department issued notice to Sharma claiming that he had made some illegal constructions in his flat in the building, and sought his reply. Sharma, in his reply to the BMC, said no unauthorised construction was carried out at his flat in the building. The civic body on December 1, 2014, however, replied refusing to accept the actor’s clarification.
Sharma then filed an application in Dindoshi sessions court against the notice. On December 28, 2014, the sessions court granted him interim relief and directed the civic body not to initiate any action pending hearing of the application.
“Despite the sessions court order, the corporation issued another notice on April 28 this year directing razing of the building,” Sharma said in his petition. Sharma and Khan sought the BMC notice to be set aside and direction to be issued to the corporation not to act upon the notice pending hearing of this petition.