The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) can use Shivaji Park this year for parking trucks on Ganpati immersions days.
They will have to restore the ground to it original state by the end of the month and will have to come up with a proper parking plan for forthcoming festivals.
The Bombay High Court on Thursday allowed the BMC to use the ground for parking trucks with the condition that the municipal commissioner and the commissioner of police give undertakings that they would restore the park by September 30.
A division bench of Chief Justice Mohit Shah and Justice D.Y. Chandrachud has directed the government to come up with an alternative plan for parking before October 21.
"You have to find a solution on a permanent basis. You may use it for few days, but the consequences and aftermath are bad (on the park)," the chief justice said.
The BMC had approached the HC on Wednesday for permission to park 400 trucks that come for immersion. Last month the court had restrained the entry of vehicles inside the park following a PIL by Wecom Trust.
Virag Tulzapurkar, counsel for Wecom Trust and citizens Ashok Ravat and Sharad Dixit, said the corporation had recently spent Rs 1 crore on sprinklers for watering the grass in the park. "The corporation does even allow people to walk on the grass. How can they seek permission to park trucks there?" Tulzapurkar asked.
Tulzapurkar responded that on Ambedkar Jayanti and during political rallies, trucks are parked at distance on adjoining roads. "The same arrangement can be used here," he said.
BMC's counsel, K.K. Singhvi, said the corporation wanted a relaxation only from September 15 to September 18.
Government pleader D.N. Nalavade said all 400 trucks will not be parked at the same time. "They will come and go and would be parked near the gate," Nalavade said. The court has asked the BMC and the traffic department to allot space on the ground for parking trucks.