HC admits Navy’s plea to demolish building
A petition filed by the Indian Navy in October 2010, which sought the demolition of the 18-storey Harsiddhi Heights in Worli, was admitted by the Bombay high court on Monday.mumbai Updated: Apr 26, 2011 02:20 IST
A petition filed by the Indian Navy in October 2010, which sought the demolition of the 18-storey Harsiddhi Heights in Worli, was admitted by the Bombay high court on Monday.
In its petition, the Navy claimed that the developer of the contentious building, which is in vicinity of its naval base INS Trata, had not obtained any clearance from it prior to its construction.
They further claimed that the building was “a threat to national security”.
While admitting the petition, a division bench of justice DK Deshmukh and justice AV Mohta stated that the interim stay applied on further sale of flats and induction of occupants will continue till the next hearing scheduled in June.
Saket Shah, the partner of Prithvi Developers, which constructed the building, also filed an affidavit on Monday.
According to Shah’s affidavit, site 5 of INS Trata, which is considered to be a sensitive area as it stores mobile missile launchers and other ammunition, is entirely visible from the Bandra-Worli Sealink.
“When the sealink was being planned, Naval authorities wanted its height to be restricted/ kept lower than that of site 5. However, the sealink has been constructed at a height substantially higher than that of site 5,” states the affidavit.
The affidavit also claimed that the labelling of Harsiddhi Heights by the Navy as a “threat to nation” is baseless. It also states that the action initiated by the Navy is “discriminatory”, “arbitrary” and “malafide”.
“Several other buildings, including the 22-storey Godrej building [which is taller and closer to the naval base than Harsiddhi Heights is] have been specifically permitted in the last few years by the Navy Defence Authorities. This despite the buildings having a clear aerial view of site 5 of INS Trata,” said the affidavit.
Shah further claimed that till date, the central government has not found it necessary to impose restrictions on construction taking place in the vicinity of INS Trata.
Additional solicitor general Darius Khambata sought time on behalf of the Navy to file a reply to the affidavit.