NMC issues ultimatum to Empress Mall

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 15 Mar 2017 10:46:13

Staff Reporter,

Remove unauthorised construction within 24 hrs or face demolition, warns civic body

Nagpur Municipal Corporation has issued ultimatum to developer of the Empress Mall to immediately remove unauthorised construction within 24 hours, since it had failed to submit any revised building plan to planning authority. The State Government has rejected appeal filed by developer of Empress Mall challenging rejection of its revised building plan which according to it was in accordance with Development Control Regulation. Minister of State for Urban Development Dr Ranjit Patil while asking the developer to submit its revised plan before the Municipal Commissioner, directed the authority to decide it in accordance with law and prevailing DCR.

In its notice dated March 9, NMC informed KSL & Industries Ltd- which constructed Empress Shopping cum Multiplex Mall on erstwhile Empress Mill lands,
that as the revised plan was rejected by the appellate authority under Section 47 MRTP Act and a demolition order for the alleged illegal construction was passed by Minister of State for Urban Development, therefore it should remove the unauthorised construction without any delay. The NMC has given a 24-hrs final notice under sections 53 and 54 of the MRTP Act to Empress Mall developer to remove the alleged unauthorised construction.

There is already a PIL filed by Chandu Lade and Rakesh Naidu through counsels Anirudha Deo and Vivek Bharadwaj questioning inaction by the authorities against illegal construction by the Empress Mall. According to this PIL, the mall is presently running without a fire fitness certificate and the Nagpur Municipal corporation has already issued a notice dated September 21, 2016 u/s. 8(1) of the Maharashtra Prevention and Life Safety Measures Act, 2006, thereby declaring the said shopping mall as unsafe for public and has even directed it’s occupants to vacate the same.

Similarly, NMC had also rejected the application for fire fitness certificate of the Empress mall by order dated August 18, 2016, thereby directing the Empress mall to file fresh sanction map and obtain fresh fire recommendation from it for availing fresh fire fitness certificate.

In their affidavit, the petitioners claimed that mall developer had suppressed the above vital facts in its appeal under section 32 of the Maharashtra Prevention & Life Safety Measures Act, 2006 before the Director, Maharashtra Fire Services, Mumbai and obtained a status quo order against the NMC from taking any further action. The PIL had also alleged that KSL and Industries have defaulted in making payment of VAT worth Rs 52,55,82,573, water bill worth Rs 28 crore, property tax worth Rs 14.59 crore, entertainment duty worth Rs 18 lakh and electricity bill worth Rs 16 crore.
According to appeal filed by Mall developer, entire construction was in accordance with Development Control Regulation and was rejected by then Municipal Commissioner on the basis of non-technical ground and denied allegation of any excess construction. The construction which is beyond permissible limit can be compounded, the appellant has claimed.