Mumbai: Observing that a large number of people would have to approach the courts, the Bombay High Court on Thursday stayed the demolition, eviction and also auction of properties till March 31.

A bench of Justices Shahrukh Kathawalla and Riyaz Chagla, however, said that in case of urgent matters, the civic chiefs can proceed with action, only after seeking permission from competent courts.

The important order came in response to a petition filed by a housing society from Byculla challenging the demolition notices that the BMC has served it.

While dealing with this petition, the bench noted that amid the outbreak of this global pandemic, courts are already hearing cases for two hours. It further said that during these two hours too, efforts are being put in to ensure that courts aren't overcrowded. 

"To prevent individuals, firms and companies who are aggrieved on being served with demolition or eviction notices or the notices to auction their properties, they are left with no option but to rush to the courts," the bench noted.

"Thus, we suggest to the commissioner of BMC as well as all chiefs of the civic bodies in the state to consider issuing a general directive not to demolish, evict and hold auctions of attached properties for a specified period," ordered Justice Kathawalla. Notably, before passing this significant order, the bench took note of the numerous applications against such notices and seeking urgent hearings.

The bench has posted the matter for further hearing on March 31.

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Free Press Journal