The Bombay High Court on Wednesday restrained the BMC from taking action on its order cancelling permission given to Shiv Sena (UBT) MLA Ravindra Waikar for constructing a luxury hotel in Jogeshwari.
A division bench of Justices Sunil Shukre and Rajesh Patil directed the civic body to maintain status quo in the case for two weeks and asked it to file its reply.
Criticism for politicising the issue
The bench also deprecated Waikar for politicising the issue by pleading in his petition that he would not get justice since he was from a rival political party.
“The petitioners state that Petitioner No 1 (Waikar) being from a rival political party does not expect any justice before his political rival persons hearing the appeal,” his petition read.
The judges said: “An attempt is being made to politicise the issue... why? You [Waikar] should not have mentioned such statements in the petition about political allegations.”
Removal of controversial statement
Senior Advocate Aspi Chinoy and advocate Joel Carlos, appearing for Waikar, requested the court to allow them to delete the said para, which was allowed by the bench.
BMC counsel Senior Advocate Milind Sathe submitted that Waikar did not have permission to construct above the plinth level and that the earlier permission granted was up to the plinth level only. He further submitted that the BMC would not process his application and would file a reply to the petition.
Allegations of violation of natural justice
The petition filed by Waikar, his wife Manish Waikar and business partners Asoo Nihalani, Amardeep Singh Bindra and Raj Lalchandani alleges that the permission was cancelled without giving them a show cause notice or a hearing, which was against the “principle of natural justice”.
The BMC, on June 15, passed an order cancelling permission granted for a luxury hotel stating that earlier development permissions were not disclosed and as the commencement certificate (CC) has lapsed.
The permission to construct the hotel was granted in January 2021.
Calling the BMC order as “arbitrary, illegal and mala fide”, the petition stated that the civic body had made up the excuse of the CC having lapsed, since a CC did not require a renewal.