Building demolition on Richmond Rd stayed

Building demolition on Richmond Rd stayed

Armed with Karnataka High Court order, Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) east zone officials brought down a portion of a building on Richmond Road, which was built against sanctioned building plan.

The demolition, which was in full swing, however, was stayed by the division bench, comprising Karnataka High Court Chief Justice D H Waghela.

The building on a 2,400-sq ft plot belonging to Zubeda Nazir, has five floors and violates the set back norms of Town and Country Planning Act. Since it was disturbing the neighbourhood due to violations, Rustumji Residency Owners Association had approached Karnataka High Court seeking its intervention.

In this connection, Justice Ram Mohan Reddy had passed an order on Monday for the demolition of the portion of the building, which was violating the sanctioned building plan, and directed BBMP to submit the compliance report by Wednesday morning.

The demolition drive began in the morning, spearheaded by the Chief Engineer of East Zone, R Prasad. An earthmover and about ten labourers were engaged to demolish the structure. The demolition evoked curious response from neighbours who gathered to see walls, projections, windows and doors crumbling down with every assault on the structure by the earth-mover.

The building owner, with his lawyer, was seen pleading with the chief engineer to stop the action but he went ahead expressing helplessness as his inaction, in the presence of media, would attract contempt of court and he was duty bound to initiate action against the illegality.

The work stopped at about 4.30 pm on Tuesday when the advocates succeeded in getting the order copy. In the High Court, hearing the writ appeal by Nazir, a division bench stayed the demolition and adjourned the next hearing to December 11. The appellant has contended that she was never given an opportunity to be heard in the writ petition and that she never received any notice from BBMP about any violation of sanctioned plan.
 
She also contended that demolition orders were not issued by the High Court, but was a mere preliminary order by BBMP. BBMP has carried out the demolition only following an oral direction from the single judge bench.  

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