MUMBAI: The last vestiges of hope for embattled residents of the upscale Campa Cola society in Worli appears to be lost. The BMC’s building proposal department has “on legal grounds” rejected their proposal to regularize those sections of the society that fall within the permissible floor space index (FSI) limit. The BMC plans to raze 35 illegal floors across seven buildings on October 3, instead of the earlier plan of October 2 owing to Gandhi Jayanti.
The civic body turned down the residents’ plea based on two paragraphs of the Supreme Court’s February 27 order, which ruled that all floors above the first five will have to be razed.
Citing paragraphs 46 and 47 from the judgment as reasons for the rejection, the BMC stated the apex court had warned it as well as the government against interfering in the demolition, under Section 351 of the BMC Act.
The SC order stated, “We direct the state government and its functionaries/officers as also the officers/employees of the corporation shall not put any hurdle or obstacle in the implementation of notices issued under Section 351 of the 1888 BMC Act and order dated December 8, 2005. The corporation is expected to take action in the matter at the earliest.”
In the rejection letter to the society, the BMC quoted the SC order of May 2, which made it clear at the end of five months the body will have to take action in light of the February judgment.
Rajiv Kukunoor, chief engineer, development plan department, confirmed that the rejection letter had been dispatched.
TOI had reported on September 13 that Campa Cola residents had got a temporary reprieve again with the SC granting them an opportunity to approach the BMC for appropriate interim relief.
Knocking on the BMC’s door to save their flats was the last recourse for residents. There was an FSI violation, where residents hoped to regularize 67,000 sq ft which was within the permissible FSI limit, out of the 91,000 sq ft area. This means, out of the 92 illegal flats, 73 could have been spared if the BMC had decided to regularize them.
Now, all the 140 families will have to vacate the 92 flats on October 3. “Residents will have to move Supreme Court again at the earliest,” said a civic source.