Buildings cannot be legally demolished without a commencement certificate

Under the current redevelopment scheme, buildings cannot be legally demolished without a commencement certificate. Dated: May 19, 2014.

TO prevent loss of life and to encourage residents of privately-owned highly dilapidated structures to vacate their dangerous premises, the BMC, in its proposed guidelines to the Bombay High Court (HC), has introduced new conditions for redevelopment of such structures.

Under the current redevelopment scheme, buildings cannot be legally demolished without a commencement certificate (CC), which mandates an agreement between occupiers/tenants and landowners/developers.
However considering the urgency in demolishing highly dilapidated and dangerous (C-1 category) structures, the BMC is willing to allow demolition without the CC, and to stall fresh construction on the site till residents/occupiers reach an agreement with landowners/developers.

The corporation has proposed imposing these conditions in the initial sanction — the Intimation of Disapproval (IOD) — granted for proposals pertaining to redevelopment of C-1 buildings, which may be demolished by the civic body as part of its preventive disaster management action.

Only after such an agreement, which suitably compensates and accommodates occupants elsewhere, is filed with the civic body, will commencement certificates (CCs) be issued for these redevelopment projects under section 45 of the Maharashtra Regional and Town Planning Act, 1996.

Last week, in its petition to the HC, the corporation had submitted these draft guidelines for tackling evictions/evacuation of residents from ‘C-1’ category dilapidated buildings (highly dangerous and in need of immediate evacuation), which are privately-owned, municipal-owned or cessed structures.

As reported by Newsline, the corporation has proposed to forcibly evict residents from these premises irrespective of their ownership and demolish the dangerous structures under section 354 of the Mumbai Municipal Corporation Act of 1888. Currently under this legal provision, the

BMC can only serve notices, but no follow-up action is possible.

For civic-owned and cessed structures maintained by MHADA, the BMC has proposed that alternate accommodation will be provided by the civic body and MHADA itself until the building is reconstructed.
BMC’s lawyers E P Bharucha, S U Kamdar and advocate JJ Xavier suggested these conditions be put in place to safeguard the rights of tenants and occupants unwilling to vacate C-1 structures.

“In case privately owned buildings are demolished by the corporation in exercise of power under section 354, then the corporation shall, while granting sanction of redevelopment, impose a condition in IOD that no CC will be issued unless and until an agreement either providing a

permanent alternate accommodation in a newly constructed building

or settlement is arrived at by and between the tenants and/or occupier and the landlord in respect of the said demolished premises is, filed with the corporation,” says the draft guidelines submitted to the HC.

As per data, there are approximately 593 C-1 structures under various ownerships across Mumbai. The tally is likely to increase as more structural audits of buildings aged over 30 years, are being carried out.

The state has told the HC that it is currently in the process of deliberating on the guidelines and the matter has been adjourned to June.


J.B.Patel (Jeby)
Housing Societies’ Activist

One thought on “Buildings cannot be legally demolished without a commencement certificate

  1. Sir. I am a member of chs in kurla (e) my building is under redevelopment but our society committee members are misguiding with help of developer to other members on FSI and as per registered development agreement both are not interested to give it area and parking for members. The said society had put case on myself in Co. Op.court showing agreement to court that these thing we are giving to myself but myself is not vacating the said premises. As per they say in my reply I whatever the said committee members say that should be given in presence of court. But they haven’t given it. In 2013 July my water connection was disconnected by unknown person while asking to mhada they said bmc has disconnected it after asking bmc they said because of dilapidated building and 354 notice issue by bmc the water connection was disconnected. In 2014 October my light connection was disconnected by bmc and in 2015 with the help of police society committee members forcibly evicted my family. I put the case in high court for justice but judge’s have not given even interim relief to me. What was my demand as per agreement I should get that was wrong? Or asking for individual agreement is wrong? Or developer is using more FSI and not giving benefits to members is wrong? Or as per final
    Offer letter by developer is not providing parking to members which has been passed by bmc approved 35 parking? What was my fault ? Please reply.

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