HC upholds BMC decision to give municipal ground for Navratri
Mumbai: The Bombay High Court refused to interfere with the decision of the Mumbai civic body to allow Durga Puja and Garba dance as part of Navratri celebrations on a suburban Borivali municipality ground, to a local corporator.
A bench headed by Justice S C Dharmadhikari dismissed a petition today, which had challenged the permission granted by Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), to Congress municipal corporator Shiva Shetty, to organise Navratri festival on Kora Kendra grounds in Borivali West.
The Court accepted the argument of the civic body that its permission is in accordance with its policy laid down for such purposes.
However, judges asked organisers to ensure that the ground is restored to the civic body within the stipulated time, in the same condition as it existed before permission was given.
Counsel for the petitioner Navin Chomal alleged that the civic body had flouted its own circular which restricted the municipal corporation from giving the entire ground. Only one-third of the ground is to be given for cultural functions or programmes, while the rest is to be left for children to play, he argued.
The BMC`s counsel A Y Sakhare counter argued that the civic body`s impugned circular pertained only to playgrounds and not recreational grounds. Since Kora Kendra was a recreational ground and not a playground, the restriction on the use of one-third space would not apply here, he said.
He pleaded that all rules had been duly followed in this case and the permission granted was not illegal.
The PIL had alleged that organisers had used the ground for commercial activities, since entry to general public is not free during the Navrati programme. It said that passes were sold for a price at the entry gate or given to those who purchased goods from sponsors of the show.
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