BMC blues for indigo
Part of Bandra restaurant torn down after civic body sent out several notices to the owners for illegal encroachment
Another one bites the dust. After demolishing several eateries in Bandra owing to illegal modifications to the structures, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) brought down the axe on a part of Indigo Deli at Bandra for encroaching on open space outside the restaurant.
Officials from the BMC and the demolition squad brought down a part of the eatery yesterday, that had just opened up at Pali Naka in April 2012. Officials told MiD DAY that despite sending notices to the owners about the encroachment, no action had been taken.
“We sent them so many notices informing them of the illegal structure. They ignored all of our notifications. That is when we received orders to demolish it,” said a BMC official from the Building and Factory department, H-West ward. He added that the owners of the premise had modified the eatery without obtaining the necessary permissions from the concerned authorities. Confirming the news, S Dhamane, ward officer of H-West ward said, “We had to demolish (Indigo Deli) as it was a permanent structure constructed illegally by them.”
However, Dipti Dadlani of Indigo Deli refuted claims of receiving any notification from the authorities prior to the demolition. “We did not receive any notice from the BMC. I am not in the state to make an official statement but all I can say is that the original structure of the place has been the same since the last two decades.”
The shock comes after civic body officials have been carrying out a demolition drive at various other Bandra eateries for illegal encroachments. In the months of April and May, authorities have demolished parts of Papa Pancho, Rude Lounge, Tavaa, Shiv Sagar and Jai Bhawani Shankar after Vijay Gore of the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) wrote letters and sent photographs of the restaurants having illegal extensions.
“Initially, the officials told me that they couldn’t carry out the demolitions owing to staff crunch but later they started the crackdown on the eateries,” said Gore.
Bharati Kakkad of Union Park Residents’ Association, who has been at the forefront against the illegal encroachment by restaurants at Carter Road, added, “These people make illegal extensions. They change the infrastructure to double the restaurant’s capacity for business. Also, their extensions are a safety hazard. The chimneys emit heat and the tarpaulin used to cover the extra area could easily catch fire. Other than this, noise and congestion increases in the area as well as the behaviour of the customers is horrible, at times. This action has to be taken by the BMC against the illegal occupancy.”
The other side
“We are rather surprised at the action taken by the BMC. Indigo Deli, Bandra, has existed as is (since April 2012) from the time the building was erected (about 15 years ago). This action has been taken without any prior notice. Be rest assured we will back in business extremely soon,” informed Indigo Deli’s Managing Director Rahul Akerkar and Director Malini Akerkar.