Mumbai: Colaba, Ghatkopar and Mulund favourite spots for illegal hoardings

While the other civic wards could only remove the hoardings, T ward (Mulund) has reported (175) the highest number of prosecutions.

SHEFALI PARAB-PANDITUpdated: Friday, October 14, 2022, 11:25 PM IST
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Mumbai: Colaba, Ghatkopar and Mulund favourite spots for illegal hoardings | File photo

The prime locations and busiest places such as Colaba, Ghatkopar and Mulund have been found to be the favourite spots for setting up illegal hoardings and banners.

In its drive against illegal hoardings, The Free Press Journal (FPJ) found that Colaba, Ghatkopar, Sion and Mulund have the highest number of complaints.

While the other civic wards could only remove the hoardings, T ward (Mulund) has reported (175) the highest number of prosecutions with 329 police complaints and 3 FIRs between January and September.  

The illegal hoardings put up at junctions, chowk etc have been defacing the city for several years. The Bombay High Court has recently directed the state government to take steps for implementing the nodal committee's recommendations to tackle this menace. The court has also suggested amending the BMC Act to make provisions for stricter penalties. Currently, the ward-wise team of the license department regularly inspects their respective areas and pulls down illegal hoardings and banners. It has been observed that civic officials are reluctant to take any legal action against the violators.

The highest number of complaints on illegal hoardings were received from H/ West, F/ North, G/ North, A, P/North, N and T ward. Around 700 illegal hoardings were removed from the Mulund area (T ward), out of which 80% were of some political parties.

The T ward has been active in filing court and police cases against the violators. Chakrapani Alle, assistant municipal commissioner of T ward said, " We have a separate team of license department under Senior license inspector who inspect the area with his staff and immediately pull down the hoardings. In the case where we don't know the details of the party who had installed the hoardings, we file prosecution against the person whose name is on the banner."

 Colaba, Fort and Churchgate areas are also facing the menace of illegal banners- hoardings. The civic officials of A ward have pulled down 389 hoardings but the prosecution was filed against 1, 3 police cases and 1 FIR. While N ward has removed 589 hoardings in the Ghatkopar area and filed 39 police cases. But no one is prosecuted or any FIR has been registered, according to civic data. " A policy should be brought by the BMC to curb the menace of illegal hoardings. They should fix certain spots for advertisement where permission can be given for banners and hoardings for a certain period and should follow it strictly. In this way, the BMC can get rid of hoardings and can also get revenue," said Anil Galgali, an activist. 

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