The illegal Kabutarkhana (feeding place for pigeons) erected by real estate tycoon and local BJP MLA Mangal Prabhat Lodha using his MLA fund, was demolished by the Collector of Mumbai Sampada Mehta, on Friday morning.
The kabutarkhana had become a major bone of contention between the Shiv Sena and the BJP. This was the second time the kabutarkhana was demolished, earlier the BMC had demolished it in October. However, this time the Collector office got involved as the seashore where it was constructed falls on collector land.
However, the demolition didn’t go well with Lodha, who protested outside the office of the Mehta, along with his supporters. He claimed that kabutarkhana was constructed in 2005 with all required permissions. However, debunking Lodha’s claim, Local Member of Parliament of South Mumbai, Arvind Sawant said, “Lodha is lying, there can be no kabutarkhana construction on the seashore, and Lodha is trying to give it a political colour for his wrongdoing. The action is collector is appropriate and hence the kabutarkhana was demolished today.”
The report of superintendent of City Survey and Land Records, Mahesh Ingale, filed in the High Court further proves that the structure was illegal, “On the direction of the collector, the deputy collector encroachment issued a notice dated February 17, under section 53 of the Maharashtra Land Revenue Code and a hearing was given to the concerned parties, following which the said structure has been removed.” says the submission.
Meanwhile, the issue also came up in the High Court, where the petitioners for Adarsh Chowpatty Pragati Mandal, which is the High Court appointed committee also raised the issue of illegal Kabutarkhana and mentioned that, how it posed a health hazard for visitors and locals.
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