Locals fight to save open areas in Mira Road

Bhayandar: Hundreds of residents of Shanti Park, Mira Road, have rolled up their sleeves to save the open spaces in their complex from encroachments and also to register their protests against the Mira Bhayandar Municipal Corporation (MBMC) and the ruling governance for their glaring insensitivity and deliberate inaction towards the brazen illegalities.

“As a token of protest, we have planned a silent march on July 21. The agitation will be intensified, if the illegalities continue exist,” said Santosh Banavlikar.

A sprawling residential locality, Shanti Park, houses more than 5,000 families in 128 buildings. However, a major chunk of the open area measuring 65,000 sqft, earmarked as recreation ground (RG) for the housing societies, has been illegally occupied by a religious establishment, alleged residents.

Ironically, in gross violation of the rules, a private entity representing a particular community has been appointed as the caretaker for the open space and the religious structure.

This is despite the structure has been officially tagged illegal. However, the demolition orders continue to remain on paper, exposing the double standards of the civic body.

“The space is now under possession of the corporation. A garden has been proposed to be built under the aegis of legislators area development funds.

Construction measuring 15 per cent of the open space is allowed and the concerned establishment has been directed to pull down the remaining structure,” clarified a senior civic official.

Meanwhile, the society members have also demanded disqualification process initiated against seven local elected representatives in the MBMC for their brazen involvement in sheltering the illegal constructions. The BJP rulers have, however, termed it has a politically motivated move.

By Suresh Golani

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