The controversial 'Glass House' bungalow built illegally by nephew of a Maharashtra Minister on a 301 square metre CIDCO plot in neighbouring Navi Mumbai has been demolished, the civic body informed the Bombay High Court on Friday.
Hearing a PIL, the Court had earlier directed Santosh Tandel, nephew of Excise Minister Ganesh Naik, to demolish the bungalow failing which Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC) was asked to pull down the structure in Belapur.
The PIL, filed by RTI activist Sandeep Thakur, had alleged that the minister, his son Sandeep Naik and his nephew Santosh Tandel had usurped land measuring over 1.45 lakh square meters at Belapur. It further alleged that Tandel had built a bungalow on the land which was declared as a 'No-Development Zone' by CIDCO due to sea water flowing into the plot.
Commissioner of Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation, Abasaheb Limbaji Jarhad, filed a compliance report in the High Court today saying that the bungalow had been demolished. He said that Tandel had demolished the structure and there was no occasion for the civic body to take the step of demolition.
The Court was informed that since the land fell under 'No Development Zone', the concerned authorities had been asked to disconnect energy and water supply provided there.
Observing that law was equal for everyone including ministers and their relatives, a division bench of Justices D Y Chandrachud and S C Gupte had on the last occasion come down heavily on the authorities for allowing illegal structure to come up on the land. After perusing all documents the court had observed that the bungalow was illegal and built without permission.
"The brazen manner in which the violation has taken place shows the complicity of the planning authority (Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation). The civic body has failed in discharging its duties. The law is the same for everyone. So what if the person involved is a minister and his relative," Justice Chandrachud had observed in his order.
The Petitioner had produced an RTI reply which showed police bandobast due to visit of Excise Minister Ganesh Naik to the 'Glass House' 72 times from October to December 2011.