The Bombay High Court on Thursday set a precedent by asking the builder to inform the court what facilities he would provide to the two families opposing redevelopment of a Thane dilapidated building.
A division bench of Justice DB Bhosale and Justice AR Joshi asked the builder to give an undertaking that he would pay Rs 1,000 per day if he hands over the newly constructed tenements after deadline.
The judges were annoyed after seeing photographs, which indicated that deliberate damage was caused to the 20-year-old Saptarshi Society, to show that it was dilapidated.
The judges suggested that the opposing residents, Aparna Puranik and MV Boricha, vacate their flats, as there was no other option. “The pillars are so badly damaged that nobody knows when it would come down,” said Justice Bhosale.
However, they would continue to stay in the “dangerous” building until March 26 when the petition filed by Pankaj Mhatre, another resident, will come up for further hearing.
Mhatre had asked the high court to direct the police to comply with a notice issued by the Thane Municipal Corporation (TMC) to evict the two families opposing the redevelopment of Saptarshi Society.
The corporation had issued the notice under Section 268(5) of the Bombay Provincial Municipalities Act, 1949 after Puranik and Boricha refused to vacate the premises.
Under the notice, the in-charge of the local police station — in this case Naupada — was directed to forcibly evict the families.
A structural engineer, as contended by Mhatre, had declared the building unsafe in December 2002 and a
state-appointed committee has confirmed this in April 2007.
All other residents have vacated the building in view of the findings and subsequent Thane Municipal Corporation notices.
But, according to Mhatre, the redevelopment work has come to a standstill because the two families refused to vacate their flats.
Puranik and Boricha, who were present in court on Thursday, had opposed the redevelopment saying the building was not dilapidated as contended by others.
The court on Thursday appointed advocate
Shyam Marwadi to represent them.
The Bombay High Court told the advoctae to look into their argument that the building wasn’t a society but an apartment wherein they were entitled to equal share in the benefits of proposed redevelopment.