Lakhs of residents who have their houses built on forest land are likely to get interim relief when the matter is taken up by the Supreme Court on September 30.
The residents would have had to wait years had the Supreme Court agreed to the state government’s proposal to allow the whole case of forest land flats being heard by the Supreme Courts Forest Bench.
Fali Nariman, the counselor for Godrej — one of the petitioners in the case, had moved a petition asking for the case to be heard by the SC’s Forest Bench. The counsel for state also agreed to the move.
This was opposed by the counsels for the other petitioners, including those of citizen groups like the Hill Side Residents’ Welfare Association who claimed that the moving of the case would prolong the result for years altogether.
The apex court has now decided to hear the case on September 30 and is likely to pass an interim order, allowing regularisation of flats.
Lakhs of houses of people living in areas at Thane, Mulund, Borivli, Kandivli feared losing their house after the Bombay High Court in March 2008 had deemed the their flats illegal for being built on forestland.
The residents took the matter to the Supreme Court which asked the Central Empowered Committee to give its recommendations. Last month, the committee submitted its recommendations asking for regularisation of land after paying a nominal afforestation fee.