In their haste to seal and demolish illegal buildings, the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) left two children trapped inside their house on Wednesday.
A harried Tek Chand, a resident of Masjid Moth, had to spend hours pleading MCD officials to release his two children — aged 10 and 14 — and mother after were left locked inside their Kotla Mubarakpur house by the sealing squad of the MCD. “We have been living in this house for the past 45 years. We didn’t say anything when the MCD demolished the first floor a month ago. However, how can they seal our ground floor, which is completely legal? My children and mother are still locked inside,” said Tek Chand.
Losing all hope, he finally called up the police control room. However, the police said they were not authorised to remove the seal. Tek Chand and his wife were not at home at the time of incident. “My eldest son tried to convince the MCD engineer, but the latter refused to listen to the problem. The officials said they were given orders to take action against the house,” Tek Chand said.
“Later, the officials agreed not to demolish the house and just seal it for the time being as all our belongings were inside. Two of my children and my mother, who were sleeping, didn’t even get a chance to come outside,” he added.
The MCD official, on the other hand, had a different story to tell. “We first demolished the first floor a month ago as it was completely unauthorised. Today, we sealed the ground floor because it was recently constructed and is illegal,” said a senior MCD official.
According to the civic body, Masjid Moth is an urbanised village, where properties that were constructed before 2007 were given protection under Delhi Laws (Special Provisions) Act for urbanised villages, 2008.
As per the law, sealing action cannot be initiated in those areas.
“All those properties in urbanised villages like Munirka, Lado Sarai, Shahpur Jat, where construction work have been carried out after 2007, are liable to MCD action.
The children and their grandmother were still inside the building till the filing of this report.