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HindustanTimes Mon,21 Apr 2014

Will follow law while demolishing mobile towers: civic body to HC

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, December 16, 2012
First Published: 01:33 IST(16/12/2012) | Last Updated: 01:34 IST(16/12/2012)

The BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Thursday assured the Bombay high court that it will not demolish the close to 1,000 roof-top mobile towers of Reliance Communications Limited without following the due process of law.

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The statement came in response to a petition filed by Reliance Communications Limited and Reliance Infratel Limited seeking direction to the BMC and Maharashtra government not to insist on obtaining permission from the civic body for installing cellular signal receptors, a basic necessity for wireless telecommunication services – ordinarily known as roof-top mobile towers and from taking any coercive steps against them for lack of such permission.

The division bench of justice AM Khanwilkar and justice RD Dhanuka disposed off the petition after senior advocate VA Thorat, who represented the mobile service providers, stated that they had no difficulty in making applications and seeking permission from BMC for installing new cabins and antennas in future, if the Corporation agreed to consider their plea of non-requirement of the civic body’s permission.

BMC counsel Anil Sakhare, in turn, assured the court that the civic body would not demolish any existing roof-top mobile tower installed by the companies across the city and will decide their plea seeking permission for new installations along with their contention that they do not require such a permission.

The bench has kept all the contentions raised in the petition open and has also granted the telecom service providers to challenge orders of civic authorities, if they hold that the companies must obtain necessary permissions under provisions of the Maharashtra Regional and Town Planning Act 1966.

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