BMC turning blind eye to squatters outside Khar school, say locals


BMC turning blind eye to squatters outside Khar school, say locals

 MUMBAI: Residents and activists of Khar have alleged that the BMC is turning a blind eye to illegal structures which are coming up along the footpath outside St Vincent de Paul Church and St Elias High School, Chuim.

"The hutments have been there for a long time and after complaining to the BMC we were told that the area would be cleared of squatters. Now, one can see concrete structures being built there, which shows that encroachers are not going to move anytime soon. These structures are being built, using the church walls as support," said Dolphy D'Souza of Save Our Land.

According to D'Souza, hutments were built on stormwater drains which have not been cleaned for several years now. "Time and again the illegal constructions have been brought to BMC's notice. A delegation of activists met assistant municipal commissioner Prashant Sapkale on May 17 and informed him about the illegalities but we were told that the staff were busy with elections and hence the issue wasn't addressed," he said.

BMC officials said that they had received the complaints and would soon survey the area to find out the legality of these huts. "Any structure found to be illegal will be demolished," said a civic official.

The structures which are right outside one of the school gates have been causing inconvenience to nearly 2,500 students. "The hutments are along the footpath outside gate number two, which is the exit route for the children. This leaves no footpath for the kids to use, which is a threat to the their safety," said Fr Milton Gonsalves, manager of the school.

Date of Article: 
Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Times of India