Navi Mumbai: The Bombay High Court has given two weeks extension to slum dwellers of Patel Mohalla and Kutchi Mohalla to submit their undertaking to the Panvel Municipal Corporation (PMC) on humanitarian grounds. However, they have to vacate their houses to pave the way for the construction of around 2,600 homes under Prime Minister Awas Yojana (PMAY).
Earlier, the High Court had ordered slum dwellers to submit undertakings by July 13 to the corporation. However, after the Janhit Kalyankari Society approached the High Court and sought more time, the court extended the deadline by two weeks.
Slum dwellers' plea rejected
On June 26, the HC rejected a writ petition filed by two slum dwellers, against the proposed scheme under PMAY by the PMC. As per the court’s ruling, the petitioners have been directed to vacate their houses by September 30 and submit an undertaking for the same by July 13.
In 2020, the Central proposed to redevelop six slums in the PMC area under the PMAY’s 2015 'Housing for All 2022’ scheme, which included Valmiki Nagar, Mahakali Nagar, Laxmi Colony, Kutchi Mohalla, Patel Mohalla, Ashok Bagh, and Takka Vasahat.
However, the Public Interest Welfare Society, backed by Kutchi Mohalla and Patel Mohalla, opposed the redevelopment and approached the HC. During the hearing on June 26, the court directed the slum dwellers to vacate.
If the undertaking is not submitted within the stipulated time, the civic authorities will take appropriate action by vacating the huts, informed deputy civic chief Kailas Gawade.
Under Prime Minister Awas Yojana, the PMC plans to construct 2,600 houses, with the first phase involving the construction of 14 buildings in Patel Mohalla, Kutchi Mohalla, or other locations. PMC had earlier served notices to 939 slum dwellers to vacate the huts, promising ₹4,000 per month as rent for an alternate arrangement of houses. As part of the rehabilitation, the residents of these slums were to receive houses of 30 sq mt. However, the process was delayed after the two slums approached the court.