15-day demolition drive begins in Panvel; PMC to form squads
PANVEL: Panvel Municipal Corporation (PMC) has started a 15-day drive against illegal constructions within its jurisdiction on Tuesday.
The drive began when PMC cleared the old market area and Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Road, which have been encroached upon by hawkers for years, of illegal structures. “Barring Ambedkar Jayanti and Gudi Padva, the administration has planned demolition drives on all days for 15 days at a stretch. We will not spare any encroachment,” said PMC chief executive officer Mangesh Chitale.
“Apart from hawkers and shopkeepers, we will also target illegal buildings, balconies and extensions. We want to rid Panvel of this mess,” said Chitale.
On Wednesday, demolition action was undertaken from Uran Naka to Tapal Naka and Panchratna Hotel. A fish market was removed apart from 24 sheds and four stalls. Two handcarts were taken away. Some sheds that had come up at Ambedkar Road on Thursday were removed by a special squad.
Despite the appointment of a contractor for removing encroachments, not much action had been taken, hence PMC cancelled the contract. This had led to little control on the encroachers.
Since there was opposition to the removal of the encroachments, a meeting was held at Phadke Auditorium on Monday by the administration and a plan was prepared for the antiencroachment action.
The plan was implemented on Tuesday and the encroachments were removed. The sheds
put up by shops on footpaths and roads were hit hard in the demolition drive. The vendors were, however, upset with the PMC’s move as the civic council had taken such a harsh action after years of turning a blind eye to the encroachments.
There were requests from several politicians to the authorities to prevent the demolition of the sheds. However, the authorities continued with the demolition drive.
“After the completion of the 15 day-drive, we shall form two special anti-encroachment squads. They will ensure that there is no further encroachment,” said Chitale.
He said, “We appeal to residents to cooperate with us and those who have encroached should themselves remove the encroachments.”
A file picture of an illegal building being pulled down during a demolition drive by Cidco.