PERNEM: Alleging hill-cutting activity on around 3,500 sq mtrs of land at Junaswada in Mandrem, advocate Prasad Shahapurkar has threatened to go on a one-day hunger strike if action is not taken in the matter.
Acting on his complaint, the Mandrem panchayat inspected the site visited the site on Wednesday and said a report would be submitted to the TCP department for further action.
Speaking to media persons, advocate Prasad Shahapurkar said the TCP had taken cognizance of his complaint and had sent a notice to the panchayat and talathi, directing them to take further action.
Advocate warns of sit-in dharna
“Authorities should stop the construction immediately and if no appropriate action is taken in this matter, I will sit on a one-day dharna at Junas wada Mandrem,” warned the advocate, and appealed to Mandrem panchayat and people of Mandrem to support him in the agitation.
Adv Shahapurkar said he had first filed a complaint regarding the hill-cutting with the Flying Squad, and a team surveyed the site and submitted their report. He claimed that report had revealed that the hill had been cut across an area of about 3,500 sq. mtrs.
Advocate Shahapurkar, Mandrem Sarpanch Adv. Amit Sawant, local panch members and panchayat secretary Preetam Sawant visited the site on Wednesday at 11 am. The team found that the hill had been cut and labourers were living there in hutments. It was found that these labourers did not have any health card and had no facility for toilet and bath.
When contacted, Sarpanch Amit Sawant said the panchayat sanctions permission only after taking into consideration the technical aspects. “The company obtained permission for construction purposes, and not for hill cutting. The hill-cutting activity has to be stopped immediately and appropriate action will be taken soon,” said Sawant. “After the TCP department issued licences, the panchayat issued permits. However, there is no permission for hill cutting, and hence the complaint of Adv. Shahapurkar has been taken into consideration.”
“There has been hill cutting on 3500 sq. mtrs of land, and a protection wall also has been built. The TCP has not issued permission for that. Taking the complaint into consideration, the panchayat has inspected the site, and the entire report will be sent to TCP.”
Panchayat issues permit only for construction
Insisting that the panchayat does not allow hill-cutting activity anywhere in its jurisdiction, the Mandrem sarpanch clarified that the panchayat only issues permit for construction, said Adv Sawant. He assured that a joint survey would be carried out by the panchayat and TCP department.
“A report will then be presented before the public. If the TCP states that something is going on illegally, the panchayat will take appropriate action,” he said.