HC questions govt over its policy to regularise illegal constructions

By Accommodation Times News Services

Bombay-High-CourtThe Bombay High Court rejected the state government’s proposed policy to regularise illegal construction, while giving the judgement court said, the policy almost appeared to provide for people to build first and then apply for permission to get it sanctioned.

Drawing the attention towards the impact of regularising illegal constructions, HC asked, “If there is any construction on Oval Maidan, this law will regularise the construction and will seek shifting of the reservation. In this case, the landowner is the government. In principle, can you tolerate this?”

The court stated that it could not tolerate this, a division bench of Justice A S Oka and Justice Prakash Naik asked if the regularisation policy, which pertains to illegal structures built before December 31, 2015, can stand the test of reasonableness under Article 14 (Equality before Law) of the Constitution.

The court was hearing a public interest litigation pertaining to illegal constructions in Digha, Navi Mumbai, in which the government had submitted its policy and sought permission for its implementation.

The court will give its final orders in next hearing.

“It has come to this, that under the provisions of the policy, a person can first construct and then go for permission of the construction,” said Justice Oka, while hearing the submissions. The court said the policy allows shifting of reservations and protects illegal constructions.

Corporation and Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation have acquired land, compensation has been paid, but they are not in a position to argue against a state policy,” said the court during the hearing. The court also said the policy was contrary to the earlier orders pertaining to regularisation of slums.

Appearing for the petitioner, advocate Datta Mane said such a policy would lead to regularisation of 2.5 lakh buildings in the state. Government pleader Abhinandan Vagyani, while defending the policy, said the planning authority will scrutinise each proposal for regularisation.

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