There seems to be no end to the woes of the owner of Aditi restaurant in Parel, Srinivas Shetty. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Wednesday refuted his claims that the alterations he carried out to his establishment have been approved by civic officials.
The hotel has been in the news ever since Shetty printed a line in the restaurant’s receipts in July, criticising the UPA government for raising taxes. Indian Youth Congress (IYC) workers, led by its city president Ganesh Yadav, had strongly objected to this.
Sanjay Kurhade, assistant commissioner of F/south ward said that a notice under section 55 of the Maharashtra Regional Town Planning Act will be issued to Shetty.
Local residents said Shetty’s claims were baseless, because there is no way the BMC would regularise any encroachments.
They said the building’s compulsory open space was being used for storing gas cylinders and that the footpath is partially occupied for the seating arrangements by the hotel.
Nayana Kathpalia, co-convener of Citispace, said that the footpath can only be used for erecting bus stops and fire hydrants. “Otherwise, it has to open and without any encroachment,” she said.
Agreeing with her, a senior civic official said, “The footpath encroachment and use of the open space for another purpose cannot be regularised as per civic rules.”
Yadav said the Shiv Sena-BJP alliance which controlled the BMC was shielding Shetty since he was against the UPA government.
“We are not opposed to criticism. But a legal document like a hotel receipt cannot be used for political purposes. Independent of that, if a structure is illegal then it has to go,” he asserted.