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Bombay HC Criticizes Slum Dwellers’ Demand for Free Housing

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Published on: November 17, 2023 at 21:55 IST

The Bombay High Court has recently expressed disapproval of a plea by slum dwellers seeking free alternative housing due to eviction from encroached land, highlighting the absence of similar relief for salaried individuals facing financial burdens in the city.

In the case of Vaibhavi SRA CHS Ltd v. State of Maharashtra & Ors., the court underscored that while slum dwellers make such demands, salaried employees in the city, including those working for the High Court and government, receive no free housing or financial relief.

In its order dated November 10, the court, comprising Justices GS Patel and Kamal Khata, stated, “Nobody gives them a free house. Nobody gives them transit rent or any form of financial relief.

The observation came in response to a plea by the Vaibhavi SRA Co-operative Housing Society, whose members faced eviction for a land development project.

Senior advocate Milind Sathe and advocate Abhinav Chandrachud represented the petitioner-society, arguing for the cancellation of the project developer’s appointment and seeking reliefs such as alternative housing and transit rent.

The court noted the society’s objection to continuing with the developer and its resistance to proposed plans.

The High Court expressed surprise at the extensive demands made by the society, including determining the location and physical setup of the rehabilitation units.

The court remarked, “There is such a thing as going too far. We do not believe that these societies have this spectrum of rights.”