13th Oct 2017
THANE:The Bombay high court on Wednesday lifted its stay on grant of occupation and commencement certificates to new constructions and building projects on Ghodbunder Road in Thane and Baner and Balewadi in Pune.
The direction by a bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice Nitin Jamdar came on a PIL regarding nonsupply of water to high-rises having OCs and shortage of water for existing buildings as it is diverted for construction purposes, forcing residents to purchase water from tankers. On May 5, the court had directed the Thane Municipal Corporation (TMC) not to issue OCs and CCs to projects on Ghodbunder Road. A similar order was passed for the Pune Municipal Corporation areas of Baner and Balewadi.
But the HC on Wednesday noted that thereafter, except for the petitioners, no individual flat-owner or housing society had come up with complaints. “If there is any violation, we can take action. I’m waiting for the last six months. Water is something you cannot stay without,” the CJ said. TMC’s advocate said it was not diverting water for construction, while the PMC’s counsel said it had written letters to housing societies asking their representatives to attend meetings but nobody had turned up.
Lifting its stay on grant of OCs and CCs to new projects on Ghodbunder Road and in a couple of areas in Pune, the Bombay high court said, “We are surprised to hear that none of such meeting (sic) were attended by (housing) societies or occupants. If there was really a water problem, as severe as expressed by the petitioners, the people affected would have approached this court.”
The judges added, “We cannot shut our eyes or opine that there is no water problem. It may not be to the extent expressed by the petitioners, but there is bound to be water problem with so many flats coming up.” Taking note that not everyone could approach the court through PILs and get their grievances addressed, the bench said it would be “just and proper” if in each of these districts there was a committee so that aggrieved people could “approach it and place their grievance (s) and get them redressed”.
It said the panel should be headed by the municipal commissioner and consist of the divisional commissioner, chief city engineer (in charge of water supply) and member secretary of the Maharashtra Legal Services Authority. It shall meet once in 2 months and take up grievances of those “having deficit and non-supply of domestic water” and report to the court from time to time. “Let us see how this committee works,” said the CJ, adding that the PIL will be kept pending. TMC and PMC have been directed “to create public awareness for the purpose of redressal of water supply problem.” The judges said “in light of the above and measures taken the restrictions imposed on local authorities preventing issue of occupation certificate will have to be reconsidered by us.”
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Source : realty.economictimes.indiatimes.com