A day after residents of illegal flats in Worli's Campa Cola Compound agreed to co-operate with the BMC, the latter finally undertook the first phase of its demolition on Monday.
As reported earlier, the Supreme Court (SC) had in February last year ordered the civic body to raze illegal flats across seven buildings in the compound due to FSI violations. Subsequently, the BMC undertook the first phase in which electricity, piped gas and water connections will be cut.
As on Monday, the BMC cut electricity supply to 54 of the 90 flats which were issued notices. Of the 48 which had piped gas connections, 14 were cut. The BMC found that 35 flats owners had procured illegal water connections. Of these, 3 were cut.
The BMC had deployed 12 teams, 4 each from Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST), Mahanagar Gas Limited (MGL) and civic water works department during the drive.
"After three days of resistance, the residents finally agreed to co-operate with us. The first phase began on a peaceful note. We are satisfied with the pace we are going ahead with the drive," said deputy municipal commissioner, Anand Waghralkar.
Waghralkar said the civic body plans to increase the number of teams – 6 each. "We would like to finish the work on Tuesday itself. But seeing as disconnecting water and gas connections is a risky job, we want to be careful. If need be, we will take another day. We just want to ensure that there is no gas leak," the official added.
Assistant municipal commissioner (G-south ward), Keshav Ubale, said the officials will submit a report to higher authorities in the BMC. "We will start the next phase only when we get an order from the higher authorities. So far, our intention is to complete the job at hand," Ubale said.
Meanwhile, residents claimed CM Prithviraj Chavan on Sunday assured them the BMC will not make any irreversible changes to the structures. "Chavan has assured he would into our issue. He also promised the internal walls will not be razed during monsoon. However, we decided to let the BMC begin its drive as the protests took a toll on some of the elderly residents, who took ill. We had no option left," said Ajay Mehta, a resident of Mid Town apartments.
Action taken so far
Building/Society Electricity Gas Water
BY Apartments 02 02 02
Shubh Apartments 01 01 01
Esha Ekta Aaprtments 10 06 --
Patel Apartments (A) 02 -- --
Patel Apartments (B) 04 -- -- Orchid 20 05 --
Mid Town Apartments 15 -- --