Urgent Action Alert: stop brutal demolition of houses in Mumbai


Stop Brutal Demolition of Houses of poor in Mumbai

The monsoon is on the doorstep ready to make the situation a little worrisome in Mumbai but the authorities, as it seems, has decided to bring the worst for Ganpat Patil Nagar through their reckless planned decision to demolish it today. While 25000 families in GP Nagar have a sword hanging on their heads over last 4 months and while six deaths had occurred during brutal demolition in January, once again Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai is ready with the police force, this morning under disguised reason of ‘Mangrove protection’.  Adarsh Nagar and Indira Nagar in Govandi, Mumbai are also given a notice to vacate altogether 600-700 houses by June 4th tomorrow, in the name of naala building, drainage.

The local leaders of GP Nagar and activists have taken all pains to find out the documents and from discussions with the authorities that

  • The forest department has given in writing that it has nothing to do with the demolition and there is no plan for Mangrove protection.
  • There are no more than 10 houses within 50 meters from Mangrove.
  • No judgment (in BEAG vs State of Maharashtra & others) has ever directed demolition of slums or any building but only directed protection of Mangrove since 2005.

GP Nagar slum was fully exiting in 2005as per Google maps. High pakka buildings are under construction since last few years, but no demolition of those is planned. The GP Nagar slum on one hand provided water supply and other basic amenities yet on the other hand, tried to be demolished.

The poor toiling their family belongings are unprotected workers, women, and children face atrocities whenever they lose their shelter. The NHRC has been appealed to intervene and so is the National Commission on Children. Yet they have neither indicated any identification nor has written to the state government.

The Govt. of Maharashtra promised in 2011 & even thereafter that slums will be declared as per section 4 of the Slums Act, 1971 and all amenities will be provided as per section 5 (A), yet without taking that process forward, poor people are being dishoused while whatever reserved for “Housing to the Dishoused” is being de-reserved and being diverted to non-justifiable purpose & to the elites, may it be for a judges cooperative or a shopping mall.

Including Ganpat Patil Nagar, all slums have applied for Rajiv Awas Yojana & are ready to take up self-development with 2009 as the cutoff date for RAY, as is being expected in Delhi. As regards to Adarsh Nagar and Indira Nagar, a very elaborate dialogue with the Assistant Commissioner, Mumbai, Eastward  Mr. Kishore Gandhi brought out that there was no map or plan prepared neither for required naala building nor of demolition. During the joint site visit by the Jr. Engineers and one representative on June 1st, it came out that not more than 4-8 houses were obstructing drainage and yet Jr. Engineer was adamant on demolition. All this indicates that the real purpose in each slum demolition seems to be not drainage or natural conservation but land grab.

Ghar Bachao- Ghar Banao Andolan, NAPM demands from both the State Govt. of Maharashtra and Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai that:

1.      Stop eviction of poor communities, including Ganpat Patil Nagar.

2.      Enquire into the Mangroves protection & encroachment in the framework of the judgments.

3.      Implement RAY with the funds and facilitation beginning with the pilot project proposed for Mandala community, Mankhurd.

GBGB, NAPM appeals to all sensitive supporters to write to the Municipal Commissioner, Shri Sitaram Kunte & C.M. of Maharashtrato stop brutal demolition today and not to make the poor shelterless, which is impingement to their right to life and not to commit atrocities against dalits in GP nagar and other communities.

Act before it’s late….

Shri Prithviraj Chavan,Chief Minister,

Government of Maharashtra,

Mantrayala, Mumbai

Ph: 022-23634950

E-mail: chiefminister@maharashtra.gov.in ,

ashish.valsa@gmail.com

Sitaram Kunte, IASMunicipal Commissioner

Office Address:

Municipal Commissioner

Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai

Municipal Head Office

Mahapalika Marg

Mumbai-400 001. 

Tel:0091-22-22620525

e-mail:mc@mcgm.gov.in

===============================================

National Alliance of People’s Movements
National Office : 6/6, Jangpura B, Mathura Road, New Delhi 110014
Phone : 011 26241167 / 24354737 Mobile : 09818905316
Web : www.napm-india.org

Twitter : @napmindia

 

Victory for Ghar Banao Andolan, Mumbai High Court Vindicates their Contention Agianst Hiranandani Developers


Mumbai High Court Indicts Hiranandani Developers; Orders Stopping of Further Construction

Accepts Criminal Fraud and Says Petitioners free to Initiate Criminal Proceedings against the State Government and Hiranandani Developers

Mumbai, February 22 : “It is a victory of the struggles of the working classes of Mumbai who live in slums, bastis and chawls, face eviction and are constantly termed as ‘encroachers’. The interim judgement of Mumbai High Court today vindicates our stand and once again proves the criminal nexus between builders, politicians and bureaucracy. We welcome the directions of the Honourable Court and hope the land will be returned to the original owners or used for the urban poor. It is ironical that the Government of Maharashtra was kind enough to give 300 Acres of land to Hiranandani at the rate of 40 paisa per acre but has continued to evict and break the homes of basti dwellers in Mandala, Sathe Nagar, Golibar, Kannamwar Nagar and others,” said Medha Patkar.

She was reacting to the interim judgement in a PIL filed by her against Niranjan Hiranandani for irregularities and fraud in development of Hiranandani Gardens, township in Powai. Mumbai High Court bench presided by Chief Justice Mohit C Shah and Smt Roshan Dalvi today ordered immediate halting of all construction and directed the developers not to sell any flats without the Court order. The case was argued by Advocate Ashish Mehta on behalf of the petitioner, Medha Patkar of Ghar Bachao Ghar Banao Andolan – National Alliance of People’s Movements. In earlier years the case was argued by senior advocate Y P Singh.

Court accepted criminal intent and illegality in land allotment to the Hiranandani Developers and building of the Hiranandani Gardens it said the petitioners are free to initiate criminal proceedings against the Developers, State Government and other Statutory authorities.

It ordered the developers to construct 3,000 flats (1500 flats of 400 Square feet and 1500 of 800 square feet) to be handed over to the State Government, which will allot it to the Lower Income Group and Middle Income Group people at the rate of 135 Rs / square feet, the rate prevalent in 1985. The land in question was, actually given on lease to Hiranandani for building houses for poor people but in gross violation of all terms and conditions it built sky scrapers, housing societies, Malls etc for rich and big businesses.

While posting the case for final hearing on March 29th 2012 Court directed MMRDA, Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai, State Government, Developers and Petitioners to jointly prepare diagrams showing the extent to which the FSI and TDR has been used and how much remains to be used. Court accepted the contention that huge losses has been incurred by the government due to violations by the Hiranandani developers but didn’t pass any judgement on that since there is a separate arbitration case ongoing in Mumbai High between the State and Developers.

Members of Ghar Bachao Ghar Banao Andolan expressed their satisfaction at the progress and said they will wait for the final judgement in March2012. Millions of working class people have a right to decent housing and it is time state government started evicting the big builders who have encroached upon the public and other land meant for housing of urban poor. Let government use the land above ceiling available in Mumbai for implementing of the right to housing. Let them implement Rajiv Awas Yojana. Our struggle against the Builders will continue and we will continue to expose their corruption.

Sumit Wajale, Prerna Gaekwad, Santosh Thorat, Madhuri Shivkar, Madhuri Variyath

Contact : 9423965153 / 981998059

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