High court orders fire brigade to vacate Mumbai’s Priyadarshani Park
Directive came after a report of the court commissioners revealed that a shed, fire truck were obstructing jogging, walking tracks and damaging themUpdated: Oct 31, 2017 16:01 IST
The Bombay high court on Monday directed the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to remove a temporary shed it constructed at Priyadarshani Park in Nepean Sea Road and also remove a fire tender that has been parked inside the structure since June 14.
The division bench of chief justice Manjula Chellur and justice Mahesh Sonak also directed the civic body to restore the jogging and walking tracks inside the 20-acre playground maintained by the Malabar Hill Citizen’s Forum. The court was hearing a petition filed by the forum.
The directive came after a report of the court commissioners revealed the shed and fire tender had obstructed the jogging and walking tracks inside the ground and damaged them. The report said the tracks had been substantially encroached upon by the shed.
The bench was irked to note that time and again the civic body maintained before it that the shed and fire tender were not obstructing the tracks.
But what irked them more was that another bench of the high court had ordered the BMC to maintain status quo ante — as prevailing before the shed was constructed and fire tender was brought on the ground. But this order had not been complied with, and instead civic officials were adamant that part of the ground was required for fire station.
The judges were peeved more after senior counsel Anil Sakhare began arguing that the jogging and walking tracks were not shown in the sanctioned layout for the ground, and finally the civic body made a statement it will immediately remove the temporary shed and the fire tender after the judges warned they will send the civic officials concerned to jail for contempt of the court.
The BMC had previously argued that an area measuring 5,000 sqm has been shown in the development plan of the city as reserved for the fire brigade, and it plans to construct a fire station there.
There is no fire station in the immediate vicinity and in case of emergencies, fire tenders are required to be taken from Gowalia Tank to Malabar Hill and it takes about 35-40 minutes for fire brigade vehicles to reach the area, the civic body has said. It has said that a fire station at the park is necessary because a large number of VIPs reside in the locality.
First Published: Oct 31, 2017 00:32 IST