241 illegal buildings set to be razed

BMC has issued 3,726 notices to structures for illegal alterations or construction beyond sanctioned legal plans.

Written by Alison Saldanha | Mumbai | Published: November 12, 2013 12:53:37 am

As many as 241 illegal constructions — residential and commercial — across 24 wards are “ripe cases” for demolition,according to the BMC. More than half of these (152 cases) are in five wards: P-North (Malad),S (Bhandup),M-West (Chembur,Mankhurd and Govandi),K-West (Juhu,Vile Parle and Andheri West),and E ward (Byculla).

In the past eight months,the BMC has issued 3,726 notices to structures for illegal alterations or construction beyond sanctioned legal plans. The notices have been issued under sections 351 and 354-A of the Mumbai Municipal Corporation (MMC) Act of 1888,and sections 53 and 55 of the Maharashtra Regional and Town Planning (MRTP) Act of 1996.

“Their replies have been scrutinised. We have taken a final decision to raze these structures,” said a senior official from the removal of encroachments department.

“Under Section 351,we issue notices asking for authentication of the construction. In these cases,we may not possess the construction plans and ask for an explanation through documentation. If the respondent does not furnish the documents,the structure is liable for demolition,” the official said.

Roughly 50 per cent are stop-work orders. “The orders are valid for 24 hours by which time the party must furnish the permissions received,” the official added.

A bulk of these orders (289) has been served in M-East ward. In L ward (Kurla) in the eastern suburbs and K-West ward in the western suburbs,more than 170 notices have been issued. Other high-incidence areas in the island city include C ward (Bhendi Bazaar) with 99 orders and G-South (Worli,Lower Parel).

Roughly 25 per cent of the notices (showcause) have been largely served in the western suburbs. These include 118 notices in the P-North ward,110 in K-West ward and 96 in the R-Central ward.

Under the MRTP Act,almost all notices have been served under sections 53 and 55. These are mainly for constructions that have violated the original plan by carrying out illegal alterations/construction or changing the use of the structure.

Notices under section 53 ask the party to restore the structure to the originally approved plan within 30 days. Maximum notices (65) have been issued on constructions in Bandra (W) and Borivali-Dahisar area. Section 55 pertains to temporary structures that go against the sanctioned plan. In such cases,the party is asked to demolish it before the BMC takes up the work itself. Most of these notices (83) have been issued in R-Central ward.

Of the 3,726 cases,1,253 are pending with the civic body.

alison.saldanha@expressindia.com

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