SC stays demolishing of illegal flats in Campa Cola society

The Supreme Court has directed the BMC not to demolish the Campa Cola till May 31, 2014.

Residents of Campa Cola Compound protest against BMC's demolition drive at Campa Cola Compound in Worli. Pic: Satyajit Desai

The residents cheered as the Supreme Court stayed the demolition of the illegal flats in the Worli housing society for 7 months.

In the ruling today, the court has also ordered the BMC to take action against the builders.

The apex court had earlier ordered BMC to demolish 96 flats across 35 illegal floors in seven buildings in the compound. The SC deadline to vacate the flats ended on Monday.

The flats were built without the permission of BMC and hence were declared illegal. Over 100 families have been residing in the complex for the past 25 years.

The residents of the Campa Cola compound have been waging a long legal battle since 2005 when they first went to court for water connection and regularisation and the court ordered the then municipal commissioner to take time-bound action in the case. 

Earlier in the day, a demolition squad of the civic corporation, escorted by a massive police force, bulldozed into the Worli building complex in south Mumbai to start the demolition process as per the earlier Supreme Court order.

The BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) action came a day after several hundreds of residents locked out the civic demolition squad and police by locking the gates of the complex and parking vehicles on the approach road to the seven high rises in Worli.

The civic and police officials on Tuesday evening cut off the electricity, water and gas connections to a few of the vacant illegal flats and left the premises.

They, however, returned aggressively Wednesday morning and moved aside or climbed on the residents' vehicles, broke down the main gate with a bulldozer and entered the complex.

Many of the residents who opposed them were bundled into waiting police vans and detained even as a huge crowd of people gathered to witness the drama.

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