Raze all illegal bungalows on Alibaug coast in one week: Bombay HC
The Bombay high court on Wednesday directed the Raigad collector to demolish within a week all illegal bungalows, which are not protected by interim orders passed by local courts, along the Alibaug coast.
The court was acting on a public interest litigation (PIL) that complained about hundreds of bungalows constructed by wealthy Mumbai residents along the coast. These bungalows, the PIL said, flout Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) norms.
A bench of chief justice Pradeep Nandrajog and justice Nitin Jamdar also directed Raigad revenue authorities to produce interim orders passed by local courts that restrained authorities from pulling down the offending structures.
The judges were irked to note that revenue officials were unmoved although private individuals had encroached on government lands.
“This is a free nation, which does not mean that this is muft ka nation. Government property does not come for free,” said the bench.
The assistant government pleader, however, clarified that in these cases, lands are private, but the constructions flout CRZ norms.
The PIL was filed by the local branch of the Akhil Bharatiya Maratha Samaj Seva Sangh against the illegal constructions along the Mumbai-side shoreline of Alibaug tehsil – primarily in Saswane, Kihim, Awas, Thal villages. The petitioner body complained that more than 175 bungalows, owned by industrialists and prominent businessmen from Mumbai, were constructed along the shoreline in no-development zones like the area between the high-tide line and low-tide line and within 200m of the high-tide line. Under CRZ norms, no constructions can be made in these areas.