With the rains around the corner, the Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority (Mhada) has declared 14 buildings in Mumbai as extremely dangerous and asked the 537 tenants living in them to vacate immediately.
Housing minister Prakash Mehta said the government wanted the tenants to vacate these dangerous structures by the end of the month. “We request the tenants not to risk their lives. If they don’t [leave], we will be forced to evict them,” he said.
Of the 14 structures named this year, the Esplanade Mansion at Fort, 42-48 Mangaldas Road, 1-13 Vittaldas Road and 230-234 Sant Sena Maharaj Marg structures have figured in the list for the second consecutive year.
This is the part of the annual pre-monsoon survey conducted by the Mhada. These structures are all beyond repairs and in extremely dangerous conditions.
While provisions have been made for tenants to shift to transit camps, residents fear that once they leave, they will have to spend years there, as the redevelopment of their buildings will get delayed because of various reasons.
According to Sayed Mehboob, a social activist from south Mumbai, said, “Most of the transit camps are far from where the tenants live. Shifting disturbs their entire life, from work to the children’s school.”
At present, there are 14,858 dilapidated structures in the island city, which were constructed prior to 1969. As many are cessed structures, their repairs are undertaken by the Mhada repair board.
On shaky ground
Most of the dilapidated structures are on small plots, where redevelopment is difficult and also unfeasible. These structures are badly maintained as landlords and tenants do not maintain them