The owner of Esplanade Mansion in South Mumbai informed the Bombay High Court on Tuesday that he has appointed Chetan Raikar, structural engineer, as conservative heritage consultant to prepare a scheme for restoration and conservation of the heritage building that houses over 140 tenants.
On Tuesday, the court took on record an e-mail communication between the owner of the building Sadik Ali Mohammad Ali and Raikar submitted by advocate Chirag Balsara.
Raikar on Tuesday accepted Ali’s request to help him with repair and refurbishment of Esplanade Mansion and said that he would require two weeks to formulate a scheme with due deliberations with the owner and bonafide tenants.
A division bench of Justice S J Kathawalla and Justice R I Chagla was hearing a plea on conservation and restoration of the heritage structure. The plea opposed a proposal by the Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority (MHADA) to pull down the building claiming it to be structurally unstable.
Raikar’s appointment comes after the court had made a suggestion that restoration can be done under the supervision of an expert from the court appointed three-member committee. The owner had submitted that he would not have a problem with the expert coming on board.
The court had last year appointed a committee consisting of structural and conservation expert Chetan Raikar, conservation architects Abha Lambah and Pankaj Joshi.
The owner also had during the last hearing on February 20 had submitted that he, along with the bonafide tenants, would provide Rs 50 crore for restoration and conservation of the heritage building.
The submission came after the court on February 11 directed the landlord to provide an estimated cost.
Balsara had submitted that a scheme will be formulated for the disbursement of the amount and it would be given to the court.
The bench had said that until the scheme is formulated, the landlord cannot start repair or refurbishment work.
A bench led by Justice S J Kathawalla took the submissions by owner on record and posted the further hearing on March 18.
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