The Bombay high court (HC) on Monday stayed the Maharashtra government’s plan to regularise 56,000 illegal houses in Mumbai, asking the state and Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to file their replies on or before June 15.
A division bench of justice Abhay Oka and j ustice AP Bhangale was hearing a public interest litigation filed by Rajendra Thacker, which stated BMC commissioner Sitaram Kunte had submitted a report to the chief minister, asking him to regularise the 56,000 illegal structures in the city by offering concessions or recovering additional fees and the state had agreed to it in-principle.
In the earlier hearing, the court had asked the state and the BMC to file a reply on whether such a proposal is under consideration.
But as the authorities failed to file their reply on Monday, the HC passed the interim order.
The PIL states the structures are in 40 conflict zones and if the report is accepted, 15 lakh people, including residents of Campa Cola in Worli, will get relief.
The decision was to be taken in the budget session.
Appearing f or t he petitioner, advocate Samedha Rao said nobody has a list of the structures that are to be regularised and that Thacker had filed a Right to Information application on it, but is yet to get a reply.
The court also said that according to an order passed by the HC in 2003, the BMC commissioner cannot delegate the regularisation process to any officer.