Looking ahead 2019: All eyes on two temples and a synagogue

Updated: Jan 01, 2019, 11:44 IST | Arita Sarkar, Rupsa Chakraborty and Vinod Kumar Menon |

Mumbai can expect some drama this year, with elections and all, but the outcome of the simmering discontent over Metro going under two fire temples is the one to keep an eye out for

Metro barricades have been put up outside Anjuman Atash Behram at Princess Street. Pic/Bipin Kokate
Metro barricades have been put up outside Anjuman Atash Behram at Princess Street. Pic/Bipin Kokate

Coming in: Undecided
The Parsi community will keep a lookout for possible damage that might happen to their Atash Behrams due to the work on the Metro III, while the Jewish community looks forward to the re-opening of a synagogue.

The upcoming year will have good, as well as bad news, for the various religious communities in Mumbai. The Parsi community has suffered a major setback, after failing to get relief from either the Bombay High Court or the Supreme Court, in their fight to save the Atash Behrams. The beginning of this year will be tense for them, as members of the community will keep a lookout for possible damage that may occur on Anjuman or Wadiaji Atash Behrams. They will also have to keep a close eye on the water levels in the wells, since without water, they will not be able to perform any of their rituals as per their customs.

Members of the Jewish community, however, will look forward to the re-opening of one of the oldest synagogues in the city. The restoration work on the Knesset Eliyahoo Synagogue which was built in 1884, is expected to come to an end in the next couple of months, after which the prayer hall will be open to the community. Barring that, the fund raising activities for the restoration of Masina Hospital, which can highlight the importance of heritage in the city, will also take place this year.

By Arita Sarkar

Expect better health facilities
Coming in: Mid-2019
The introduction of the Health Management Information System promises to lessen the troubles people face in hospitals; the Nirbhaya Centre will aid survivors of sexual assault
The new year is promising for Mumbaikars in terms of procuring better health facilities. The much awaited Health Management Information System (HMIS) will start in most major BMC-run and government hospitals. Health facilities will be online in this scheme. Doctors here will access medical reports of patients online through a software, which will help lessen the harassment patients face at hospitals. Doctors will also be able to update the usage of medicines online which will help prevent shortages.

The Nirbhaya centre at KEM Hospital is in the final stages of construction
The Nirbhaya centre at KEM Hospital is in the final stages of construction

More importantly, in January, the state will receive the first Nirbhaya Centre at KEM Hospital in a 1,500 sq feet area. Medical experts from various departments like gynaecology, psychiatry and clinical forensics will examine sexually violated women in an isolated, modified ward for better treatment and counseling. In fact, a woman can directly approach the centre without going to a police station to file a complaint.

In another proposal which is supposed to bring revolution in performing autopsies, Nair Hospital is to get a virtual autopsy centre. Doctors will be able to perform virtual autopsies through an MRI and CT scan. The body will be scanned and presented on screen for analysis. This will help for better investigation in crime cases.

By Rupsa Chakraborty

MahaRERA to get more hands-on
Coming in: Mid-2019

Come new year, MahaRERA will expand its horizons beyond tackling disputes between flat buyers and developers and will put a self-driven mechanism in place, which will transform and bring a new dimension to people's voices and power. Gautam Chatterjee, chairman MahaRERA, who has conceptualised and shaped the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act 2016, said, "MahaRERA will prioritise three areas of concern in 2019. Firstly, we will ensure that MahaRERA registered projects that were assured completion in 2019 see the light of day within the time frame and possession handed over to flat buyers."


"Secondly, we introduced submission of form 2A for quality, which applies to new projects registered after December 1, 2018, where the engineer supervising the project will certify the quality of construction material as per the National Building Code norms. This certification will be required to be submitted every quarter. Thirdly, we will be introducing Training of Expert Trainers (TOET), where emphasis will be on training construction workers through MahaRERA registered expert trainers," said Chatterjee.

Chatterjee said, "These construction workers will then be certified on the basis of their understanding and implementation of our training programme [viz: zero accident, high safety standards and environment protection]. Once promoters show their competence on the above mentioned parameters, MahaRERA will accordingly be able to grade them. I am sure our skill certification will help these construction workers to take up a job anywhere in India and overseas."

By Vinod Kumar Menon

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