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BMC to demolish illegal shrines
October 17, 2003 03:14 IST
In keeping with a Mumbai high court directive, the Bhrihanmumbai Municipal Corporation will begin to demolish illegal shrines in the metropolis from Friday.
"We have asked for police security while conducting the demolition since the issue is very sensitive," a BMC source said on Thursday.
"... we hope to complete it soon depending upon the availability of the police force," the source said.
Structures built before 1964 will not be demolished.
Meanwhile, ward officers have been talking to owners of the shrines to dismantle the structure themselves.
Following a public interest litigation filed by the Janhit Manch and its president Bhagwanji Raiyani, who challenged the "mushrooming of illegal shrines", the court had directed the BMC on September 24 to take action in accordance with the law and file an action taken report within two months.
The PIL was deferred to November 12 to enable the BMC to file its report.
On August 25, the court imposed a fine of Rs 1,000 on the Maharashtra government for repeatedly failing to file an affidavit on its policy of demolition of illegal shrines.
The PIL said illegal shrines had come up all over the city ostensibly to protect unauthorised slums. "In all such localities where illegal huts had been constructed, shrines were also built as a protective measure against demolition," the PIL said.
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