Are politicians above the Supreme Court?
Nip this in the bud and set an example that illegal buildings, built by any persuasion or purpose will face the bulldozer
The Supreme Court had asked the Forest Department in May to take action against the illegal ashram at Tungareshwar Wildlife Sanctuary (TWS) in Vasai, as it violated several norms. A report in this paper cited that it is learnt from the Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP) that alleged political interference and violence anticipated from the followers of the maharaj whose ashram it is are preventing action. SGNP authorities have already written to the police saying they will require huge force to take action.
It is disturbing to note that illegal structures not only come up but are allowed to take root and actually flourish because the people behind them have influence and muscle power. This goes beyond this one ashram and is unfortunately a pattern across the city. And, when the structure has religious connotations, the situation becomes even more delicate.
We first of all need to ensure that such structures do not take root at all. The fact that so called 'permissions' or green lights are given for something which is against the law is a pointer to the rot endemic in the system. Then, the fact that they are allowed to exist for months, sometimes years means there is a deliberate blind eye to them.
Those who dare raise a voice are silenced or live in mortal fear of their lives, once again pointing to the 'danger' of being on the side of truth. This is a disappointing commentary on the reality today.
Illegal structures need to be dealt with through the proper authorities, with a heavy hand and absolute will. There cannot be fear of 'force' or the backlash, which is common when it comes to so-called religious or spiritual structures. Followers and acolytes whip up a frenzy and make this a law and order situation. Nip this in the bud and set an example that illegal buildings, built by any persuasion or purpose will face the bulldozer.
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