Mumbai: It is good news for the residents of Thane and Pune before Diwali, as hundreds of them would soon get possession of their flats or apartments, though after a delay of seven months. This comes after the Bombay High Court on Wednesday lifted the stay on the civic bodies of both the cities from issuing the Occupancy Certificate (OC) as well as the Completion Certificate (CC).
A division bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice Nitin Jamdar vacated the stay they had imposed seven months earlier owing to the water scarcity issue in the cities.
The judges had imposed the ban on the Thane and the Pune Municipal Corporations for their failure to provide regular supply of water for domestic purposes. The Public Interest Litigation (PIL) that was filed through advocate V. P. Patil had highlighted the vows of the residents of the two cities. The PIL alleged that the civic bodies had neglected the domestic use of water and instead provided appropriate amount of water for construction purposes.
The stay was vacated only after the judges noted that hundreds of citizens are waiting to take over their flats, for which they had paid lakhs. The judges also noted that in the past seven months of litigation, not a single resident had approached them complaining of water scarcity.
The CJ said, “If the water problems were so serious, as contended by the petitioner, we think that at least a few residents or members of the public should have had approached this court. Though we cannot opine that there is no water problem in these cities but we cannot also let others suffer.”
“Therefore, we are of the opinion that there must be a committee that would oversee and address all the water related problems of the citizens. Accordingly, we constitute a committee under the chairmanship of the Municipal Commissioners of both the civic bodies. This committee will have to meet at least once in two months and address the water related grievances of the citizens,” CJ Chellur added.
This committee will be comprising of the civic chiefs along with the Additional Commissioners of the Revenue Departments and also the Chief City Engineers of the Water Departments of both the cities. To this, the petitioners advocate, VP Patil, informed the judges that the post of the chief engineer in Thane civic body has been lying vacant for the last four years. The judges have posted the matter for hearing after Diwali vacations.