Court notes shortage of water, refrains issuance of Occupany & Commencement Certificates to builders in the meanwhile

Bombay High Court: A Bench comprising of- Dr. Manjula Chellur C.J. and G.S. Kulkarni J. has temporarily refrained Thane Municipal Corporation from issuing any Occupany Certificates and Commencement Certificates in ‘Ghodbunder Road’ area.

The petitioner filed a Public Interest Litigation, complaining there is no proper water supply in the said area which comes within the limit of the respondent Corporation. The Corporation on the other hand, denied any shortage or deficit of water supply. The court stated that it is aware of the shortage of water within the Mumbai City, and that construction activity consumes more water than the normal usage of water. The Court observed that human beings and other living objects cannot exist and survive without water. Water can be treated as life saving for people reeling under heat waves. Therefore, Corporation cannot shirk its responsibility which is statutory in nature.

The court observed that in many of the buildings, apart from requiring water for construction, subsequent to construction and occupation, no water connections are provided and the occupants are forced to buy water for day-to-day necessities. It is nothing, but leaving them to the mercy of the builders. In this view, the court ordered the Respondent Corporation to not issue Occupancy Certificates and Commencement Certificates in the said area, till the next date of hearing. [Mangesh Namdeo Shelar v.  State of Maharashtra, 2017 SCC OnLine Bom 741, decided on 05/05/2017]

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