A year after two pregnant women died due to contaminated water in Worli, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has issued four different notices to the developer — M/s MY Lokhandwala Shelters — to ensure that clean and hygienic water is supplied to the residents of the slum rehabilitation building.
The court was hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed last year by Siddharth Khandagale and Rajnish Kamble, pointing that Vrushali Pawar, 26, and Kavita Aitala, 23, residents of the slum at E Moses Road in Worli, lost their lives due to water-borne disease in April 2010.
A division bench of chief justice Mohit Shah and justice DG Karnik had directed the concerned police station to provide protection in case they receive request from the developer. “Make police protection available at request to respondent 5 (M/s MY Lokhandwala Shelters) at their cost,” the high court had observed.
The counsel for the corporation, KK Singhvi, informed the court that they have issued notices to the developer after the additional municipal commissioner (projects), deputy hydraulic engineer (city) and staff of water works of the G-south ward conducted an inspection. An affidavit filed by Mukund Joshi, assistant engineer, water works, states that they have issued four different notices to the developer.
The notices were issued after receiving suggestions from Rakesh Agrawal, advocate for the petitioners, that the level of the water storage tank needs to be raised due to unhygienic surroundings.
Agrawal had informed the court during the last hearing that despite court orders, there was no change on the ground for providing clean and hygienic water to the residents.
To which, counsel for the developer Cherag Balsara assured the court that the builder will abide with the notices but apprehending trouble, he sought police protection. Water connection to the slum rehabilitation may have to be disconnected for two days to comply with the notices.
“There may be some problem due to this. That’s the reason we require police protection,” said Balsara, adding, “We will comply with the notices in six weeks as assured to the court.” The court has kept the PIL for hearing on June 28.