Mumbai: There were scenes of euphoria and bursting of fire crackers in the Campa Cola compound here today as the Supreme Court stayed the demolition of unauthorised flats in the complex for six months.
Shortly before the court order, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation squad bulldozed its way inside the compound by breaking open the gate to gain access. They used an earthmover to topple the gate as residents tried to block the entrance.
Scuffles broke out between angry residents and police. Some residents alleged that police used force against women.
Shortly after the court order, the civic staff began to make a retreat, leaving the residents to celebrate the reprieve.
Fire crackers were burst to welcome the ruling, after the apex court took suo motu cognizance of media reports on demolition of the building and stayed the action and ordered the BMC to delay the demolition till May 31, 2014.
In the ruling today, the court has also ordered the BMC to take action against the builders.
The apex court had earlier ordered BMC to demolish 96 flats across 35 illegal floors in seven buildings in the compound. The SC deadline to vacate the flats ended on Monday.
The flats were built without the permission of BMC and hence were declared illegal. Over 100 families have been residing in the complex for the past 25 years.
The residents of the Campa Cola compound have been waging a long legal battle since 2005 when they first went to court for water connection and regularisation and the court ordered the then municipal commissioner to take time-bound action in the case.