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Saturday, January 29, 2022

Alignment of Ambil Odha stream: Bombay HC asks PMC to maintain status quo

The petitioner Kishor Kamble alleged that the PMC does not have any powers to alter the alignment of the natural stream but it was doing so in the interest of real estate developers.

By: Express News Service | Pune |
Updated: December 28, 2021 3:19:11 am
In a petition, activist Kishor Kamble had raised concern about the ongoing efforts of the PMC to alter the curved alignment of the natural stream that flows through the heart of the city. (Photo: Atikh)

The Bombay High Court has directed the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) to maintain status quo on the work of straightening the alignment of the Ambil Odha stream near the Dandekar bridge.

In a petition, activist Kishor Kamble had raised concern about the ongoing efforts of the PMC to alter the curved alignment of the natural stream that flows through the heart of the city.

The bench of Justice A A Sayed and Justice Abhay Ahuja, after hearing the counsel for the parties, stated on Thursday (December 23): “We note that in the report of PriMove Infrastructure Development Consultants Pvt Ltd, dated April 2020, it is interalia recommended to avoid diverting natural nallas or stream.”

“Until the next hearing date, status quo as of today in respect of the work of straightening the alignment of the stream shall be maintained,” said the court listing the next hearing for January 10.

The petitioner alleged that the PMC does not have any powers to alter the alignment of the natural stream but it was doing so in the interest of real estate developers.

He said that the PMC, along with Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA), had taken up demolition of huts alongside the stream and levelling of the land by changing the alignment of the stream five months ago. There were protests from the residents and the work had to be stopped after government intervention.

The Ambil Odha witnessed flooding in 2019 and the PMC itself came up with a report not to alter the alignment of the stream to avoid flooding in the future.

However, the real estate developer who got the project of slum rehabilitation wanted to alter the alignment of the stream and the PMC ordered alignment work without taking the state government’s permission, the petitioner alleged.

The PMC has not done the hydrological feasibility study, the petitioner said.

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