BMC single window to help people check legality of flats

ABMC will give certificates to home buyers to ensure building is legal.

The Campa Cola experience residents claiming ignorance of illegality of 35 floors to be demolished following a Supreme Court (SC) verdict has prompted BMC to introduce a single-window system to help people check legality of flats.

The civic body will give certificates to home buyers to ensure a building is legal. It will also tell if a flat is in violation of construction norms.

"People can come to BMC to verify whether the building they are buying a flat in has been constructed as per the approved plan," said Mohan Adtani, additional municipal commissioner.

"If one plans to purchase, say, a Rs 10-crore flat, s/he can afford to spend Rs 10,000 to know if the property has all requisite permissions or not," he said.

Meanwhile, BMC has also decided to expedite ligitation in cases similar to Campa Cola.

Cases in which city civil courts have ordered stays, following demolition notices by BMC due to violation of construction norms, will now be sent to the high court (HC). "We will collect information on all such pending cases within a month and present it before HC," said Adtani.

"When we issue stop-work notices under section 351 of MMC Act for raising floors beyond limit or for other irregularities, developers tend to seek stays from civil courts. This hampers action against such irregularities. The focus will be on violations similar to Campa Cola increasing heights of buildings," said Adtani.

The latest amendment to BMC Act prevents city civic courts from staying demolition of illegal structures.

SC ordered razing of upper floors of the Campa Cola buildings last month, saying these could not be regularised.

The buildings Esha Ekta, Orchid, BY, Midtown, Patel (two wings) and Shubh were constructed in 1980 by four developers acquiring the plot from makers of Campa Cola cold drink. The buildings do not have occupation certifcates (granted only if builders stick to plans approved by BMC).

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