Instead of welcoming the ongoing demolishing drive against illegal structures, politicians from across party lines have come together to condemn the civic body.
However, this seemed to have no effect of Municipal Commissioner Mahesh Pathak, who is firm that drive, which intensified after the collapse of Somnath building at Taljai plateau resulting 11 deaths, will continue till the time illegal construction completely stops in the city.
Speaking to MiD DAY, Pathak said, “We are taking action on illegal constructions as per the DC Rules and MRTP Act provision from June 2012, under which a total 900 structures, spread on 9 lakh square feet of land, had been razed. That drive was only for the undergoing constructions and building which were ground plus 1 to five floors.”
However, BJP Legislator Madhuri Misal, along with other corporators, met the municipal commissioner in Bibwewadi and urged him to stop the demolition drive. She stated that the Hill Top area in Bibwewadi is for flood-affected people and the decision on FSI is yet to be taken by the state government. “The PMC can’t raze the structures of the poor who were staying in the Hill Top zone since 1983.”
Leaders from all political parties (see box) have taken a similar stand, and are condemning the PMC targeting the poor. Meanwhile, sources from Building and Permission department have revealed that even some local corporators are supporting illegal constructions in the area.
Executive Engineer (Building and Permission) of the PMC Sahebrao Dandge has urged citizen not to book a flat unless they see the construction map and the necessary permission certificate. “People should not pay the booking amount until they are sure that all the required permissions have been granted by the civic body. He also warned that the PMC spends just Rs 20 per square feet when it comes to demolishing a structure. “It’s not at all expensive,” he quipped
Group Leader of BJP
Instead of harassing the poor and razing their houses, the civic body should take action against errant officials. Besides, the PMC’s anti-encroachment squad should only demolish structures that had violated the additional FSI rule.
Group Leader of Shiv Sena
Whatever the PMC is doing is completely wrong. It’s doing injustice to people who have spent all the their earnings in building a small house. In fact, the PMC should take action on bigger fishes, rather than targeting small fries.
Group Leader of Congress
The civic body should legalise the structures than be regularised under DC Rules and MRTP Act. The PMC is wasting the taxpayer’s money for razing the houses of the poor. Instead, it should act against officers who had turned a blind eye when the structures were built.
Group Leader of NCP, Leader of house in PMC
It’s illogical. The PMC is not even issuing notices, in chorological order, before razing structures. The people should be given some a chance to explain their side.
From MNS, leader of Opposition in the PMC
The PMC first make the process of granting permission to small land owners at bit simpler. The entire drive has created an impression that the civic administration is against, and has ignored the common man.