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HindustanTimes Thu,18 Sep 2014

Mumbai residents firm on Campa Cola regularisation

HT Correspondent , Hindustan Times  Mumbai, November 18, 2013
First Published: 08:42 IST(18/11/2013) | Last Updated: 10:40 IST(18/11/2013)

Residents of the Campa Cola compound in Worli, who have just got a six- month reprieve from the planned demolition of their homes, are pushing the civic body to consider regularising the illegal flats, even as the corporation is looking at ways to rehabilitate them on the same plot.

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When the Supreme Court (SC) ordered a stay on the demolition on November 18, it had directed the civic body and Attorney General (A-G) GE Vahanvati to find ways to rehabilitate the residents.

However, residents have asked the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to regularise their flats under the Development Control Regulations (DCR) 1991, under which staircases, lift and lobby areas can be excluded from the total built-up area.

This, residents argue, will reduce the illegal or unauthorised area.

Ninety flats across 35 floors in the compound were declared illegal as builders constructed high-rises even though five-storey flats had been sanctioned.

“If the flats are regularised under permissible FSI, we are ready to demolish remaining flats that are in violation of the FSI,” said a resident.

This is an option that residents had explored earlier too, and had failed to convince the BMC. In 1994 and 2002, residents had written to the BMC to exempt the FSI consumed by the staircase, lift and lobby areas, under DCR 1991.

“The civic body rejected our plea on grounds that the building was constructed before 1991. We are requesting the BMC to reconsider it as regularisation is the easiest solution,” said a resident.

The idea of regularisation also goes against the SC order, which said that demolition would happen, but after residents were given alternate accommodation.

The BMC will submit its options to Vahanvati, before the scheduled SC hearing on Tuesday. The A-G too had suggested that residents could be rehabilitated on the same plot by constructing a new building.

Civic officials said the chances of regularisation were slim.“Former chief minister Ashok Chavan had rejected such a plea, so it is unlikely the option will be presented to the A-G,” said a senior civic official.


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