Mumbai: The Bombay High Court on Thursday said that if residents of dilapidated buildings did not care for their lives and continued to live there, the courts would have to intervene and direct authorities to evict them.
The division bench of Justices VM Kanade and MS Sonak today directed Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority (MHADA) to evict tenants of `Din` building in Parel in central Mumbai within three weeks.
Hare Krishna Builders, a construction firm which has secured rights to redevelop the 90 years old building, has moved the court seeking that MHADA -- which is responsible for maintenance of old buildings -- be asked to evict tenants.
The building may collapse any time, it says.
"Today we are seeing buildings collapse like a pack of cards daily and many lives are lost. Despite being aware of such dangers people continue to live in dilapidated buildings and refuse to vacate on frivolous grounds. In such cases where people don`t care for their lives the court will have to intervene and take action," Justice Kanade said.
Apart from asking MHADA to act within three weeks, the court today also directed the developer firm to pay rent of one year in advance to the tenants so they can shift elsewhere until the building is redeveloped.
As per Hare Krishna Builders, it entered into agreement to redevelop the building, and while 70 percent of the occupants agreed and shifted, balance 30 percent refused to vacate, though the firm assured that they would be provided the rent for alternative accommodation.
MHADA`s contention is that it is the builder`s responsibility to provide alternative accommodation.