Published on: June 24, 2022 at 17:07 IST
The Bombay High Court on Thursday declined to set aside or stay the BMC’s June 3 rejection for the regularization of portions of Union minister Narayan Rane’s eight-floor Juhu residence, noting that since the construction was clearly unauthorized the issue of political vengeance didn’t come up.
However, the HC dismissed the Plea made by Kaalkaa Real Estates, a closely held Rane family concern, and instead awarded a six-week protection from any “coercive action,” including demolition.
The six-week reprieve is necessary to allow for a Supreme Court appeal.
On Thursday, a Petition challenging the BMC order regarding Union minister Narayan Rane’s Juhu home was heard by the Bombay High Court bench of Justices R D Dhanuka and MC Sewlikar. According to Milind Sathe, senior counsel for Kaalkaa Real Estates, the decision to refuse regularisation was made on the basis of baseless and malicious objections that were not applicable by law and were engineered at the direction of a particular political party, particularly the Chief minister.
As Maharashtra is governed by the Shiv Sena, Kaalkaa had challenged the BMC’s rejection order, alleging that the civic action was “in pursuance of political rivalry and vendetta.” Senior counsel Aspi Chinoy representing the BMC said that the building used 2,244 square metres, which is three times the sanctioned area, in the HC hearing on Thursday. While 1,178 square metres of the site were leased to the company, construction plans for 745 square metres were approved, thus any regularization would result in an imbalance of FSI to other adjacent building occupants, according to Chinoy, who opposed his plea. He said the talk of victimization would be good if three times the sanctioned area is not used
The HC Bench agreed with the BMC that the site does not automatically become subdivided by the mere grant of a lease. It rejected Sathe’s submission that to take into account FSI for a larger plot. BMC has stated that “NOC from fire department for high-rise building is not submitted which is mandatory document as refuge area is encroached”. Santosh Daundkar, through his attorney Y P Singh, filed the case, stating that the layout had been altered without the BMC chief’s permission.