Mumbai civic body staff suspended for allowing illegal construction
The state government on Tuesday announced the suspension of an assistant municipal commissioner and other designated officers of the C ward, which covers Mohammed Ali Road, Pydhonie and Kalbadevi, holding them responsible for the illegal construction in the ward. Legislators also alleged the involvement of anti-social elements, including that of the Dawood Ibrahim gang, in the illegal construction. They alleged there is a nexus between the underworld and civic officials in the construction of illegal buildings in the area.
Responding to a question raised by Sharad Sonavane of the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), minister of state for home, Ranjit Patil said that holding them responsible for the illegal construction in the ward, the assistant municipal commissioner Jeevak Ghedamal of C ward, designated officers and beat officers would be suspended with immediate effect.
Jeevak Ghedamal, assistant municipal commissioner of C Ward, said, “I have not received any intimation about the suspension as yet.”
BJP legislators Raj Purohit and Ashish Shelar said in the House that the ward has at least 200 illegal buildings. Shelar said anti-social and underworld elements including the Dawood gang are involved in the constructions. He said that officials from the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) are in an “unholy nexus” with the underworld. Shelar said local legislator Raj Purohit’s life had been threatened for raising the issue in the legislature.
BJP legislator Parag Alvani said BMC officials do not take action even after court directives under section 354 (A) of the Mumbai Municipal Act, which necessitates immediate action.
BJP legislator Yogesh Sagar said there are five IAS officers at the helm of the civic administration, but no accountability has been fixed as far as the illegal constructions are concerned.
The Nationalist Congress Party’s group leader Jayant Patil demanded to hold the municipal commissioner responsible for the illegal construction . “I had given a list of ongoing illegal constructions with the evidence of photographs attached to the chief minister a few days ago. He directed the commissioner to take action but nothing has been done so far,” he said.
Sonawane had raised the issue of the illegal construction of a nine-storey building on Ismail Karte Road in Pydhonie. He said that despite directives from the Mhada, the ward officer failed to take action. In his reply, chief minister Fadnavis said the civil court has directed on March 3, 2018 to take action against the construction if found illegal.