Campa Cola Compound, the place where memories were made by the many families who have lived there for three decades, has seen enough agitation for a life time.
It all began in 1984 when the Planning Authority declined the revised plan of adding more floors to the seven buildings in the Campa Cola Compound which now houses many families. The permission granted was only for a basement, ground floor and five upper floors. However, the builder saw it fit to continue with the construction of 102 flats which were illegal. But the entire issue was kept under wraps till the housing society approached the Bombay High Court demanding water supply for the occupants of the society. It was during the hearing that the High Court realised that many of the flats which were occupied by families were illegal and asked the BMC commissioner to take care of the situation.
This led to a series of pleas, stay orders and dismissals not just in Bombay High Court but the apex court of the country.
After all that they been through, majority of the occupants did vacated their houses by October last year. But the remaining stayed on to protect the place they call home. They received a sever let down when Supreme Court denied the final plea to stay the demolition on June 3. It is when another round of 'Save Campa Cola Compund' campaign began where the residents approached Narendra Modi, top police offical and other officials.
Now the question is why isn't the Chief Minister of State Prithviraj Chavan trying to help the residents on humanitarian grounds? According to the residents, if Chavan wants he can seek opinions and help from the Attorrney General or the Solicitor General on the issue. But no such move has been made as of yet. In his defence, Chavan says," The Supreme Court has given very strict and specific orders in this case, so there can be no political interferance." Though in one instance he did say that he was open to discussions and deliberations as long as they did not violating the SC judgement. This dilly-dally attitude of the state's chief minister has brought him in the spotlight as well.
Making it clear that his Government would not save Campa Cola building, Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan on Friday said that Government would not legislate for a single building.
Chavan's decision to upturn the Supreme Court verdict regarding the bar dancers has raised questions. The promptness shown by Chavan in a populist decision regarding dance bars is not shared by the Campa Cola situation. It has baffled the supporters.
In the light of upcoming Assembly Elections, BJP, Shiv Sena, MNS, SP and RPI have come out to support the cause and help residents in any way possible.
The course of action that the BMC will now follow is
- June 20: Disconnect essential supply connections (water, power and gas) - Phase I
- In the coming days: Demolish down internal walls to ensure the flats are inhabitable - Phase II
- In the coming days: Initiates total demolition of the 102 illegal flats - Phase III
All the phases from the entire eviction to demolition action will be recorded as a proof for SC.
The question remains, why isn't the state who is capable of helping the people, saving their homes, their memories not doing anything? Why are they keeping mum about the situation? Why isn't Prithviraj Chavan helping his janata?