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Ulhasnagar Sindhunagar City News, Events - June-2014
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News Archive of Ulhasnagar / Sindhunagar City

June-2014 News & Updates from the City of Ulhasnagar/Sindhunagar, Maharashtra, India. Ulhasnagar City News indexed across timeline for easy retrieval.

2014-06-29As Pune adds vehicles, its air gets worse - Times
As Pune adds vehicles, its air gets worse Neha Madaan | TNN | Jun 30, 2014, 01.54 AM IST PUNE: The air quality status data for Pune for 2013-14, released by the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) recently, shows that several areas in the city have been recording pollution levels which are considerably above the permissible limits since 2005. The nine-year data in the report also said that in 2013-14, Karve Road recorded annual nitrogen oxide (NOx) concentrations that were almost double the standard, indicating high pollution levels. NOx is commonly formed from vehicles during combustion in the engine. The monitoring station on Karve Road was ranked second among the ten monitoring stations in Mumbai, Dombivli, Ambernath, Ulhasnagar, Navi Mumbai, Badlapur, and Kolhapur, which exceeded the annual standards for NOx concentrations. The report also found high carbon monoxide (CO) and benzene concentrations in Pune in comparison to other cities, including Mumbai. The annual nitrogen oxide concentrations recorded at the monitoring station on Karve Road in 2013-14 was 70 /m3, though the permissible limit is 40 /m3. The report, prepared by The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), said Pune region consistently exceeded the eight-hour standard i.e 2 milligram/cubic meter or mg/m3 for harmful CO pollution in 100% of the observations, while the Bandra and Solapur region exceeded the same for 52.3% and 7% of the observations respectively. Unusually high levels of CO have been observed in Pune in contrast to the previous two years. Emissions from vehicles and increasing usage of vehicles in Pune could be attributed to the high levels, the report said. The CO emission in 2013-14 was monitored at the continuous ambient air quality monitoring stations in Bandra, Pune and Solapur. Benzene pollution was recorded at two continuous ambient air quality monitoring stations in Bandra and Pune. The annual average benzene concentrations were recorded to be 1.3 in Bandra and 151.3 /m3 in Pune, as against permissible limit for benzene, which has been set as 5 /m3 by Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).The report said benzene pollution in Pune is a major concern. "Upon segregating the data for eight-hour intervals, high benzene in Pune was recorded between 8am and 4pm sampling. The evening (4pm to midnight) and night (midnight and 8am) sampling recorded average of about 36 and 1 /m3 respectively here," the report said. In the past ten years, the Mumbai region has recorded annual NOX concentrations in the range of 60-80/m3 which is almost double than the annual standard (40/m3), the report said.In Pune region, until 2009-10, the NOX concentrations were below the annual standard. After 2009-10, a steady increase in NOX levels has been observed in Pune. Since then the annual NOX concentration here has been around 50/m3. The annual average respirable suspended particulate matter (RSPM) in 2013-14 in all the stations in residential areas in Pune crossed the maximum permissible limit of 60 /m3 as per the report.
As Pune adds vehicles, its air gets worse - Times
2014-06-27'Ek Villain' gets 'thunderous start' - Desimartini
'Ek Villain' gets 'thunderous start' June 27, 2014 'Ek Villain' gets 'thunderous start' Bollywood NewsJune 27, 2014 New Delhi, June 27 (IANS) Mohit Suri's "Ek Villain" was greeted by "serpentine queues and housefull boards" Friday morning, say experts. The romantic thriller that stars Sidharth Malhotra, Riteish Deshmukh and Shraddha Kapoor, has done well on home turf. "Friday trends so far: East - West - North - South: #EkVillain has a THUNDEROUS start everywhere," trade analyst Taran Adarsh tweeted. Trade analyst Komal Nahta also shared the same on Twitter. " 'Ek Villain': Maya Gorakhpur Morning show full. Noon Matinee and Evening 85% sold out in advance. Great! Velocity Indore: EK VILLAIN 09:55 a.m. show Rs. 18,724.85. That's unbelievable!" Nahta tweeted. " 'Ek Villain' early mrng show at ASHOK ANIL MULTIPLEX, ULHASNAGAR (Bombay circuit) opens 100%. OUTSTANDING opening for Ek Villain all over India!!" he further tweeted. The movie has been produced by Ekta Kapoor under the banner of her production house Balaji Motion Pictures. Celebrities like Karan Johar, Alia Bhatt, Parineeti Chopra and Genelia D'Souza have also given thumbs up to the movie.
2014-06-27Box Office Reports: Ek Villain has a fantastic sta
Box Office Reports: Ek Villain has a fantastic start! Mumbai Updated: May 21, 2015 03:18 am The team of 'Ek Villain' is seen rejoicing here at Mohit Suri's office, and they have reason to. The movie starring Sidharth Malhotra, Shraddha Kapoor and Riteish Deshmukh has taken off to a great start. Trade reports are in and the numbers are rising high. Experts suggest that it might even overtake Salman Khan starrer 'Jai Ho's first day collections of Rs. 16.5 crores. In any case, analysts are looking at a minimum of Rs. 15 crore, going by the starting figures. Apparently, the competition is with the Hollywood biggie 'TRANSFORMERS: Age of Extinction'. However, Mohit Suri's 'Ek Villain' is said to have sidelined the Hollywood flick, gaining an upper hand in the market. Trade analyst Taran Adarsh said that the movie had thunderous start and the opening day figures will come as a 'shocker' for many. "Friday trends so far: East - West - North - South: #EkVillain has a THUNDEROUS start everywhere," Adarsh tweeted. "#EkVillain opening day figures [STUPENDOUS] will come as a shocker for many. This film takes Mohit Suri in an altogether different league," he later tweeted. Adarsh also tweeted that the movie grossed over Rs.1 crore in UAE on the opening day. "#EkVillain - UAE [revised figure] Thu AED 700,000 [Rs 1.14 cr]. Superb start!" read his tweet. Trade analyst Komal Nahta tweeted, "'Ek Villain': Maya Gorakhpur morning show full. Noon matinee and evening 85% sold out in advance. Great! Velocity Indore: 'Ek Villain' 09:55 a.m. show Rs. 18,724.85. That's unbelievable!" "'Ek Villain' early morning show at Ashok Anil Multiplex, Ulhasnagar (Bombay circuit) opens 100%. Outstanding opening for 'Ek Villain' all over India!!” he further tweeted. Further, we need to wait and watch. However, it seems like it is good going for this one.
Box Office Reports: Ek Villain has a fantastic sta
2014-06-27Pune Mahanagar Palika Mahamandal Limited sinks dee
Pune Mahanagar Palika Mahamandal Limited sinks deeper into losses Manish Umbrajkar | TNN | Jun 27, 2014, 05.27 AM IST PUNE: The city's public transport utility was more in the red in 2013 than the previous year, even though the number of passengers increased and there were more buses on the road last year. The financial losses for the Pune Mahanagar Palika Mahamandal Limited (PMPML) almost trebled in 2013. While the losses in 2012 were Rs 22.87 crore, they increased to Rs 62.62 crore the next year and PMPML officials have pegged the current losses at Rs 130 crore. The state economic survey report, released recently, gives statistics of the performance of 23 transport undertakings. In seven cities, including Aurangabad, Nanded, Nashik, Sangli-Miraj, Ratnagiri, Chandrapur and Vasai-Virar, the Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) provides local transport. The performance of 22 other city transport undertakings is no better, except for Amravati municipal transport and Ulhasnagar municipal transport which showed increased profit in the last two years. The transport undertakings operate about 25 buses. The Pune Mahanagar Parivahan Mahamandal Limited, formed in 2007, after the merger of the erstwhile Pune Municipal Transport, and Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Transport, has been raking up losses every year. The transport company was set up to provide an efficient city transport services in Pune, Pimpri Chinchwad and the fringe areas. However, the utility is in a shambles, so much so that a large section of corporators of the Pune Municipal Corporation have proposed that the PMPML be demerged, and two separate undertakings for each city be set up once again. Last July, at a meeting convened by deputy chief minister, and Pune's district guardian minister Ajit Pawar, PMPML made a Power Point presentation stating that the transport undertaking requires as many as 2,700 buses. Also, the PMPML has only 10 depots, which are inadequate and should be increased to 16, and at least two more mechanical workshops from the current two. There has been little progress on these fronts. PMPML's joint managing director Pravin Ashtikar attributed the losses to an increase in diesel and CNG prices, and those of spare parts. The establishment expenditure also increased by 50%. On the other hand, there has been no option for an increase in revenue. Ashtikar said the transport undertaking is trying to reduce losses by reducing operational costs. Since running buses by private operators is more economical than those run by the PMPML, the number of privately run buses has been increased from 190 to 660.The utility wants funds from the two municipal corporations for concessional passes, and construction of commercial complexes by using 2.5 FSI. It is also seeking funds through JNNURM for building depots and getting new buses, Ashtikar added.
2014-06-25Mumbai tops state in pre-monsoon malaria cases - T
Mumbai tops state in pre-monsoon malaria cases Umesh Isalkar | TNN | Jun 23, 2014, 11.45 PM IST Maharashtra has recorded 10,072 malaria cases and seven deaths due to the disease between January and May. Greater Mumbai with 2,688 positive cases and four deaths is on top of the list. But the state health department can take heart from the fact that the number of cases (13,501 in the same period last year) and the number of deaths (last year 18) has dropped due to effective cleanliness drives and strict implementation of measures suggested by the national malaria control strategy. Among civic bodies that have reported the maximum number of cases this year after Mumbai are Thane (576), Kalyan (127), Bhiwandi (92), Navi Mumbai (63), Mira Bhayander(49), Vasai Virar (41), Nashik (36) and Ulhasnagar (18). "Pre-monsoon malaria has emerged as a distinct entity. Weather conditions, rapid urbanization and large-scale construction activities provide conducive conditions for mosquitoes. But a consolidated surveillance has resulted in better detection of cases," said Kanchan Jagtap, joint director, state public health department.
2014-06-24Thane woman taken to Madhya Pradesh, "raped" and f
Thane woman taken to Madhya Pradesh, "raped" and forced into flesh trade Tue, 24 Jun 2014-03:23pm , Thane (Maharashtra) , PTI A 25-year-old married woman from Thane was taken to Madhya Pradesh under the pertext of getting her a good job and was allegedly raped by a man, who pushed her into flesh trade, police said on tuesday. The woman, a mother of two, who stays in Ulhasnagar, was taken to Khandwa by two women of her locality on April 30 with the promise of a well paying job, Sub-Inspector C N Khuspe of Vitthalwadi Police Station said, quoting from a complaint filed by her last night. In Khandwa, she was handed over to an unidentified man who took her to the forest and allegedly raped her repeatedly for over a month before forcing her into flesh trade, according to the complaint. The woman somehow managed to escape from his clutches and came back home where she approached the police and narrated her ordeal. In between, her husband had filed a missing person's complaint. The survivor also said she was "sold" to her tormentor for an unspecified amount of money, but police said her claim is being verified. In the complaint, she has named two women, Jyoti Kishore Chandwani and Komal Hitesh Riwani, and 10 other people who had conspired to take her to Khandwa and push her into flesh trade, Khuspe said. The police have lodged an offence related to rape, wrongful confinement and kidnapping and launched a probe. No arrest has been made till now, police added.
Thane woman taken to Madhya Pradesh, "raped" and f
2014-06-24Thane woman taken to Madhya Pradesh , 'raped', for
Thane woman taken to Madhya Pradesh , 'raped', forced into prostitution Written by PTI | Thane | Updated: Jun 24 2014, 22:33pm hrs A 25-year-old married woman from here was taken to Madhya Pradesh under the pretext of getting her a good job and allegedly raped by a man, who pushed her into prostitution, police said today. The woman, a mother of two who stays in Ulhasnagar, was taken to Khandwa by two women of her locality on April 30 with promise of a well paying job, Sub-Inspector C N Khuspe of Vitthalwadi Police Station said, quoting from a complaint filed by her last night. In Khandwa, she was handed over to an unidentified man who took her to forest and allegedly raped her repeatedly for over a month before forcing her into flesh trade, according to the complaint. The woman somehow managed to escape from his clutches and came back home where she approached the police and narrated her ordeal. In between, her husband had filed a missing person's complaint. The survivor also said she was "sold" to her tormentor for an unspecified amount of money, but police said her claim is being verified. In the complaint, she has named two women, Jyoti Kishore Chandwani and Komal Hitesh Riwani, and 10 other persons who had conspired to take her to Khandwa and push her into flesh trade, Khuspe said. Police have lodged an offence related to rape, wrongful confinement and kidnapping and launched a probe. No arrest has been made till now, police added.
2014-06-24Three teenaged cousins drown in Ulhas river - Mumb
THREE TEENAGED COUSINS DROWN IN ULHAS RIVER Mumbai Mirror | Updated: Jun 25, 2014, 02.00 AM IST Three boys, aged between 15 and 17 years, drowned in Ulhas river near Kalyan on Tuesday. The victims, who were cousins residing in Ulhasnagar, have been identified as Avinash Musni, Suryamohan Matapanti, and Ashwin Nantadtil. They had gone swimming, and the bodies were recovered around 4 pm. Investigating officer Inspector Vijay Bhise said: "The victims were drawn into deep waters because of the river's current. Their two cousins saw them struggling and raised an alarm. By the time help arrived, the three had drowned." The local residents said a few of them had warned the boys against entering the water but they didn't pay heed. MMB
2014-06-23Mumbai tops state in pre-monsoon malaria cases - T
Mumbai tops state in pre-monsoon malaria cases Umesh Isalkar | TNN | Jun 24, 2014, 01.48 AM IST PUNE: The number of positive cases of malaria and subsequent deaths during the pre-monsoon period has come down this year due to effective cleanliness drives and stringent implementation of measures suggested by the national malaria control strategy. The state has recorded 10,072 positive cases and seven deaths due to malaria between January and May this year. Greater Mumbai with 2,688 cases and four deaths is on top of the list. However, the state health department can take heart from the fact that the number of cases (last year it was 13,501) and the number of deaths (last year 18) has dropped considerably. "Malaria shows very clear seasonal variations in any given year. The incidence increases during and following the monsoon. However, pre-monsoon malaria has also emerged as a distinct entity of late. Weather conditions, rapid urbanisation and large scale construction activities provide conducive conditions for the growth of disease-causing mosquitoes. Meanwhile, a consolidated surveillance has resulted in better detection of positive cases," said Kanchan Jagtap, joint director of state public health department. Weather conditions have a profound effect not only on the life cycle and longevity of vector mosquito but also on the development of the malaria parasite. "Temperatures between 25 degrees and 30 degrees Celsius and average relative humidity of 60% are ideal. These temperatures and RH conditions increase the longevity of mosquitoes and thus aid malaria transmission," said a former entomologist with the state public health department. The state health department has declared 11 s in the state as 'malaria problematic s' due to higher malaria transmission reported there between January and May. Gadchiroli with 2,377 cases and one death tops the list, followed by Thane (1,131), Raigad (994), Chandrapur (389), Gondia (197), Amravati (136), Dhule (109), Yavatmal (96), Satara (80), Nandurbar (77) and Nasik (76). On high transmission rate in Gadchiroli , an entomological consultant to the state government on malaria, said, "The is endemic to malaria especially the P Falciparum strain, which has a significant presence in this part of the state. Some interior parts of the are unapproachable while officials are scared to conduct regular surveillance activities in their respective assigned areas due to Maoist threat."Gadchiroli falls in the tribal belt. "About 10% of the population is found unsymptomatic as people have built immunity for the parasite due to long exposure to malarial infections. These people are carriers of malaria transmission. Besides, there are patients who refuse to take full treatment of anti-malaria drugs due to which parasite of malaria may remain in their blood," the consultant said. Among municipal corporations that have reported the maximum number of cases this year after Mumbai are Thane (576), Kalyan (127), Bhiwandi (92), Navi Mumbai (63), Meera Bhaindar (49), Vasai Virar (41), Nashik (36), Ulhasnagar (18) and Pimpri Chinchwad (12).Every year, the malaria office and municipal corporation's health department carry out pre-monsoon clear breeding sites. The disease is borne by the female Anopheles Culicifacies, a small to medium-sized mosquito. They usually breed in rainwater pools and puddles, burrow-pits, irrigation channels, seepages and sluggish streams. Extensive breeding is generally encountered following the monsoon. The components of the national malaria control strategy include use of long-lasting insecticides, bed nets, indoor residual sprays, early diagnosis and treatment of cases, management of the environment, forecasting, prevention and control of epidemics.
2014-06-22Traffic cops to get lessons to deal with English-s
Traffic cops to get lessons to deal with English-speaking offenders Nishikant Karlikar | TNN | Jun 22, 2014, 09.46 PM IST THANE: The Thane traffic cops will be trained to speak in English to be able to converse with traffic offenders who 'smartly' try to baffle them with their English-speaking skills. Traffic department sources said that most of the constables are trained to deal with offenders by speaking in Marathi or Hindi. However, there are some offenders who usually speak in English which the constable is not very well-versed in and eventually lets them go despite breaching traffic rules. The Thane police commissionerate has 16 traffic units, including Thane city, Kalyan, Dombivali, Bhivandi, Ambertnath, Badlapur and Ulhasnagar.Most of the vehicles ply from these areas either to Mumbai or Gujarat on a daily basis and with the spurt of the vehicles on the road, the offences, too, have increased. Nearly 43 types of traffic-related offences are registered almost everyday. However, some motorists, belonging to other states or are unaware of the local language, tend to speak in English to constables who are either SSC or HSC pass outs and do not speak English. They are let off as the constables are uncomfortable with the language. Sources revealed that more than 650 constables, along with the officers, will be trained in various sessions to converse in English. An organization has been roped in for the activity and the structure of the English-speaking course will be chalked out to help the trainees gain more practical knowledge. A senior official from the traffic department said, "We will impart basic lessons in English to constables so that they don't have an inferiority complex while dealing with offenders who speak only in English. Basic lessons will boost their confidence to some extent to deal with such motorists."
2014-06-22Senior citizen robbed of jewellery worth Rs 2 lakh
Senior citizen robbed of jewellery worth Rs 2 lakh in Mumbai ARVIND WALMIKI | Mon, 23 Jun 2014-03:35am , DNA A 69-year-old senior citizen, Dharma Shankar Nandgankar who had come to Ulhasnagar for treatment with her daughter-in-law, was conned of Rs2 lakh near the railway station. The victim, a resident of Titwala, cannot recollect the incident as all the accused confused her so much that when they were removing rings from her hand, she did not utter a single word. According to the complainant, he had gone to his family doctor for routine check up on June 19 around 12.30pm. After the treatment he was returning home with his daughetr in law. On reaching station, he realised he had some work with his friend and asked his daughter-in-law to leave and that he would come later. Immediately, someone who was walking next to him, pushed him and asked to walk properly. That accused alerted others and all of them gathered and started confusing the victim. They removed his gold chain, but the victim kept quiet. Later, he realised that he was robbed. After the incident, the victim called up his daughter-in-law and lodged a complaint at Ulhasnagar police station. An official from Ulhasnagar police station said, "We have registered a fraud case and are on a lookout for the culprits. We will call the victim to get the sketch of the accused done." meanwhile, a case has been registered against the three culprits under section 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property) of the Indian Penal Code.
2014-06-22Gosht stories - Pune Mirror
GOSHT STORIES By Joanna Lobo | Jun 23, 2014, 02.30 AM IST The Sindhis make fish and mutton just as deliciously as kadi chawal-papad. A carnivorous look at Sindhi cuisine When Alka Keswani's father was growing up in the military barracks of Ulhasnagar, a walk down the street would satiate his craving for meat. Stalls hawking paya soup, skewers of goat kidney and liver basting over an open flame and justfried kheema samosas were on sale. Thankfully, his wife, Neeta Chhabria, turned out to be a competent cook, and the family's love for mutton was met by bhugal gosht and mutton teevan. Keswani says it's often that she gets a curious reaction when she discusses meat delicacies central to Sindhi cuisine considering her community is known for its fragrant dal preparations and pickles. Iconic eateries, Jhama Sweets, Guru Kripa and Bhagat Tarachand feed this view by dishing out stellar dal pakwan, tikki choley, etc. Chicken? No, thanks "Mutton and fish are traditional foods," says Keswani, Sunday lunch usually includes mutton curry eaten with kadi chawal or a whole fish, pan-fried. On days when raan, a slow-roasted, whole leg of mutton, was made, dinner preparations kicked off as early as afternoon. Mutton was usually cooked with spinach, tomato or methi, and kheema curry was incomplete without bits of liver and kidney. Veena Gidwani agrees. "If you ask an old-time Sindhi what he loves, he'll pick mutton," says the corporate consultant. Although vegetarian, Gidwani has brushed up on her meat-making skills over 16 years, as host. "Mutton, we like to slow-cook, sometimes as long as two hours, sealed and left alone. It gives it a rich flavour. Unfortunately, modern times demand that ingredients be sauteed and dumped into a pressure cooker," she says. Gidwani talks of seyal mutton and photey mein bhugal gosht (this lighter curry is made when someone is ill) are her favourites. In health-conscious homes that shun red meat, chicken may have found acceptance, but not in the Keswani household where white meat hasn't been cooked for 25 years. Bandra-based investment consultant Preeti Raisinghani hasn't bothered cooking chicken because she never ate it as a child. Her favourite, thoom mein machhi is made using garlic (thoom) and tomato. The fish is marinated for three hours in salt, turmeric and dhania powder, covered with rava and cooked in a gravy of tomato, garlic, green chillies, fresh coriander, dhania powder, red chilli and turmeric. History stands testimony The Sindhi's love for meats has its origins in history. Hailing from a region that sat beside river Indus, they saw their culture and food influenced by neighbours, Punjab and Gujarat. Additionally, the bounty of Sindh attracted Muslim invaders, who introduced Iranian and Persian touches to the food, which explains why kebabs, biryani and raan were relished for breakfast too. The river also gave the people access to fresh fish or pallo. Fish is eaten fried (called tariyal), in methi or as a simple curry like in raswali machhi. At Gidwani's home, kok pallo, a complicated baked preparation is a staple at Sunday lunch, served with Sindhi kadi and rice. "The fish is dry, and goes beautifully with curry or dal. Since hilsa (a sought-after river fish used in kok pallo) comes packed with bones, it requires leisurely eating, making it the perfect Sunday eat." Show them how Keswani, who fears a lack of eateries that serve authentic Sindhi food may lead to the cuisine assimilating way too much while losing its essence, started Sindhi Rasoi, a blog that documents traditional recipes. "When I started cooking, there were no resources to learn from. Even now, we have a handful of cookbooks but it's difficult to determine the authenticity of recipes," she says. In a similar effort, Gidwani documents her recipes via YouTube channel Simply Sindhi. "For young Sindhis, it's a challenge to cook traditional food, because most don't know how. I want to help," she says. If you aren't lucky enough to be a guest at their homes to mop up kheema curry with rotis, your next best bet is a street stall in Ulhasnagar. FISH IN A SANDPIT One of Sindhi cuisine's most elaborate recipes is the kok pallo (below). The book, We, the Sindhis relies on translated documents from the Indian Institute of Sindhology, and mentions the dish as a whole fish stuffed with garlic, coriander, green chillies and ginger, marinated in a similar mix, covered with rotis and baked in a sand pit. The Essential Sindhi Cookbook by Aroona Reejsinghani identifies the recipe as dhakiyal machhi. Veena Gidwani prepares her kok pallo by slitting a whole fish down the middle, and lightly frying it in a masala made of finely chopped onion, spices and dahi.
2014-06-21Public opinion invited on Thane dist bifurcation -
Public opinion invited on Thane dist bifurcation B B Nayak | TNN | Jun 21, 2014, 10.43 PM IST THANE: The Konkan divisional commissioner has invited public opinion on bifurcation of Thane district. Thane city will retain the headquarters of district administration for Thane district whereas Palghar will have is new headquarters in Plaghar town. While Thane district will comprise all urban and semi-urban pockets like Bhiwandi, Kalyan, Ulhasnagar, Ambernath, Murbad, Shahpur and Thane-Navi Mumbai, Palghar will have eight talukas, predominantly tribal dominated conglomerates like Palghar, Dahanu, Vasai, Talasari, Vikramgarh, Jawahar, Wada and Mokahada. Suggestions and objections can be sent to the divisional commissioner, Konkan revenue division, first floor, Konkan Bhavan, CBD-Belpaur before July 15.
2014-06-21Gosht stories - Mumbai Mirror
GOSHT STORIES Mumbai Mirror | Updated: Jun 21, 2014, 11.38 PM IST The Sindhis make fish and mutton just as deliciously as kadi chawal-papad. A carnivorous look at Sindhi cuisine. When Alka Keswani's father was growing up in the military barracks of Ulhasnagar, a walk down the street would satiate his craving for meat. Stalls hawking paya soup, skewers of goat kidney and liver basting over an open flame and justfried kheema samosas were on sale. Thankfully, his wife, Neeta Chhabria, turned out to be a competent cook, and the family's love for mutton was met by bhugal gosht and mutton teevan. Keswani says it's often that she gets a curious reaction when she discusses meat delicacies central to Sindhi cuisine considering her community is known for its fragrant dal preparations and pickles. Iconic eateries, Jhama Sweets, Guru Kripa and Bhagat Tarachand feed this view by dishing out stellar dal pakwan, tikki choley, etc. Chicken? No, thanks "Mutton and fish are traditional foods," says Keswani, Sunday lunch usually includes mutton curry eaten with kadi chawal or a whole fish, pan-fried. On days when raan, a slow-roasted, whole leg of mutton, was made, dinner preparations kicked off as early as afternoon. Mutton was usually cooked with spinach, tomato or methi, and kheema curry was incomplete without bits of liver and kidney. Veena Gidwani agrees. "If you ask an old-time Sindhi what he loves, he'll pick mutton," says the corporate consultant. Although vegetarian, Gidwani has brushed up on her meat-making skills over 16 years, as host. "Mutton, we like to slow-cook, sometimes as long as two hours, sealed and left alone. It gives it a rich flavour. Unfortunately, modern times demand that ingredients be sauteed and dumped into a pressure cooker," she says. Gidwani talks of seyal mutton and photey mein bhugal gosht (this lighter curry is made when someone is ill) are her favourites. In health-conscious homes that shun red meat, chicken may have found acceptance, but not in the Keswani household where white meat hasn't been cooked for 25 years. Bandra-based investment consultant Preeti Raisinghani hasn't bothered cooking chicken because she never ate it as a child. Her favourite, thoom mein machhi is made using garlic (thoom) and tomato. The fish is marinated for three hours in salt, turmeric and dhania powder, covered with rava and cooked in a gravy of tomato, garlic, green chillies, fresh coriander, dhania powder, red chilli and turmeric. History stands testimony The Sindhi's love for meats has its origins in history. Hailing from a region that sat beside river Indus, they saw their culture and food influenced by neighbours, Punjab and Gujarat. Additionally, the bounty of Sindh attracted Muslim invaders, who introduced Iranian and Persian touches to the food, which explains why kebabs, biryani and raan were relished for breakfast too. The river also gave the people access to fresh fish or pallo. Fish is eaten fried (called tariyal), in methi or as a simple curry like in raswali machhi. At Gidwani's home, kok pallo, a complicated baked preparation is a staple at Sunday lunch, served with Sindhi kadi and rice. "The fish is dry, and goes beautifully with curry or dal. Since hilsa (a sought-after river fish used in kok pallo) comes packed with bones, it requires leisurely eating, making it the perfect Sunday eat." Show them how Keswani, who fears a lack of eateries that serve authentic Sindhi food may lead to the cuisine assimilating way too much while losing its essence, started Sindhi Rasoi, a blog that documents traditional recipes. "When I started cooking, there were no resources to learn from. Even now, we have a handful of cookbooks but it's difficult to determine the authenticity of recipes," she says. In a similar effort, Gidwani documents her recipes via YouTube channel Simply Sindhi. "For young Sindhis, it's a challenge to cook traditional food, because most don't know how. I want to help," she says. If you aren't lucky enough to be a guest at their homes to mop up kheema curry with rotis, your next best bet is a street stall in Ulhasnagar. FISH IN A SANDPIT One of Sindhi cuisine's most elaborate recipes is the kok pallo (below). The book, We, the Sindhis relies on translated documents from the Indian Institute of Sindhology, and mentions the dish as a whole fish stuffed with garlic, coriander, green chillies and ginger, marinated in a similar mix, covered with rotis and baked in a sand pit. The Essential Sindhi Cookbook by Aroona Reejsinghani identifies the recipe as dhakiyal machhi. Veena Gidwani prepares her kok pallo by slitting a whole fish down the middle, and lightly frying it in a masala made of finely chopped onion, spices and dahi.
2014-06-21Mumbai's illegal structures and high rates - Khale
Mumbai’s illegal structures and high rates Filed on June 23, 2014 Mumbai has a history of shady developers who bribe officials and build more than what they are authorised to as per the floor space index norms. In a city where every sq ft of built-up space costs a fortune (ranging from Rs25,000 in the suburbs to more than Rs100,000 in posh localities of south Mumbai), it is not surprising that unscrupulous builders are tempted to break the rules and construct more flats than they are authorised to. Mumbai has a history of shady developers who bribe civic officials when they come for inspection and build much more than what they are authorised to as per the floor space index (FSI) norms. Shockingly, the violations relate to not just a hundred or even a thousand sq ft. Hundreds of residents of Campa Cola compound in Worli in central Mumbai are currently battling the civic authorities who have been ordered to demolish more than a hundred flats in the complex, as the floors where they are located are all illegal. But Campa Cola is just the tip of the iceberg, as there are thousands of other illegal buildings located across the metropolis. Fifty-six thousand to be precise. That was the figure the Bombay Municipal Corporation (BMC) mentioned in its affidavit to the Supreme Court last year, when asked about the number of illegal buildings in the city. According to the civic body, more than 16,000 of these were detected as recently as 2012 and 2013. Of the 56,000 illegal buildings, a significant number — more than 12,000 — is in the western suburb of Andheri. But other parts of Mumbai, including tony localities in south Mumbai, also have had their fair share of illegal buildings. Consider two notorious examples of the recent past. Pratibha, a 36-storeyed high-rise near Peddar Road in south Mumbai, which came up in the mid-1980s, included eight illegal floors adding up to 24,000 sq ft of unauthorised built-up space. The Supreme Court ordered the demolition of all eight floors. Less than a kilometre from Pratibha, another illegal building had also come up in the 1980s. Arihant, located opposite the Cadbury House, was completely unauthorised. The courts ordered the demolition of the entire structure. Another notorious example in the suburbs was of Gaurav Gagan in Kandivali, where 17 floors (of the total 24) were illegal. Eight other buildings in the complex were also found to have illegal floors. The most recent instance is of Adarsh Society in Cuffe Parade, which was also found to have come up with illegal FSI that the developers managed to get by bribing officials. While the BMC admits to more than 56,000 illegal buildings within its jurisdiction, there are tens of thousands of other illegal buildings in the extended suburbs and within the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR). Distant suburbs including Ulhasnagar, Badlapur, Virar, Vasai and even in Navi Mumbai that are home to several illegal structures, many that have come up even without the local authorities approving them. If one were to take into account slum colonies in the MMR, they number in the hundreds of thousands. The housing racket in Mumbai is mind-boggling, involving billions of rupees of illegal funds and hundreds of government and civic officials, contractors and builders.
2014-06-20How terms laid out by Campa Cola will check illega
How terms laid out by Campa Cola will check illegal housing in Mumbai Jun, 20 2014 14:01:08 IST When we talk of illegal structures, mostly residential, the reference is not to the slums that make Mumbai the slum capital of Maharashtra. It is about formal housing that people like us occupy, even if it was built without permission, built bigger than what was permitted, or built by deviating from the building code. In Maharashtra, illegal buildings simply abound. One estimate claims nearly a third of all buildings in Mumbai do not have an occupation certificate. Some 80,000 such structures in the Pimpri-Chinchwad-Pune metro region are also illegal.Ulhasnagar, smaller than Pimpri, has as many and Thane too comes close to that. Over time, Maharashtra has seen any number of slum dwellers being evacuated; their shanties swiftly razed to the extent that courts in the past had to step in, asking that it stay its bulldozers at least during monsoons. They didn’t raise the people’s angst as much as the demolitions of illegal but formal housing, like the Campa Cola structures, have. Campa Cola raises moral issues hard to duck though they are lost in the plethora of court cases seeking stays for demolitions. There are a lot more non-slum illegal structures than one can imagine. Should they be razed because there are illegalities, which spring from mischief not of the developers’ alone, their occupants mostly unaware of the infringements? The buyers-beware caveat prevails in law but they are wrong guys caught in the cleft end of the stick, a fact that now seems to have touched the conscience of the state, which is planning a new policy on regularising illegal structures. This new policy draft, interestingly, is to be prepared by a committee of a dozen municipal commissioners and two officials. This committee’s constitution itself raises two questions. One, civic bodies are the one of the two parties culpable in the rash of illegal buildings: developers propose deviations from building codes, with official machinery conniving by winking at them. Two, where are the other stakeholders, which are the city residents? The irony is that these illegal buildings neither sprouted overnight nor without the complicity of the civic officials. Once that's done and the flats sold, the civic bodies even collected taxes from them and charged twice the rate for the nectar of life, drinking water. The victims were the buyers alone. Unlike the rhetorical ‘why us?’ by the victims of this well-organised mischief, which has seen many get undeservingly richer, Campa Cola residents have asked a blunt question: who pays even if they are evacuated and their homes demolished? They have listed conditions (read here) which would require responses. It is unexplained why an entire township of swish apartments built on a land secured for peanuts in Powai to build housing for the poor is untouched, but Campa Cola is put in a quandary. That is clearly because issues of rights and wrongs of only specified buildings which, are taken up differently on case by case basis. Uniformity of approach has been lacking. Nor, why when civic bodies, of course in ignorance of the fact that plots under private forests, have allowed real estate development on them, the forest department is holding the owners to ransom and sought a review of the apex court order which freed them of liability if some costs were paid for re-afforestation. These 1.6 lakh apartments are in limbo. When the Powai township and the buildings on the private forests came up, there was – there must have been – an official promoting it, apart from the builder-developers. No effort has been initiated to find these people, who of course are officials in key positions with ability to shower discretion for a price, and take them to the law. Campa Cola residents have come out with the string of conditions which are clever indeed. Legal flats are not to be affected when pulling down the illegal, much like Shylock being allowed only his pound of flesh, not a drop of blood, and not rendered homeless even for a day. Since the parking spaces had nothing to do with the FSI consumption, they are to be protected. This can put the civic body in a bind. The 14 Campa Cola conditions come in useful and if met, would be one simple way of eliminating or reducing the illegal structures if generally applied henceforth. No more regularisation, case by case or for a group by Ordinance from time to time. Since the flats are illegal, the land’s share should accrue to the duped buyers. The properties of the successor of the erring builder, if the guy was dead, should be used to compensate the cheated buyers. If post-demolition, courts side with the apartment owners, the government should pay market price as compensation. More importantly, they want the civic officials to be punished. Identifying them is not impossible.
2014-06-19PIL challenges state's cluster development schemes
PIL challenges state's cluster development schemes Press Trust of India | Mumbai June 19, 2014 Last Updated at 20:17 IST The Bombay High Court today asked Urban Development department of Maharashtra government to file an affidavit in reply to a PIL challenging the state's scheme to allow cluster development of areas in and around Mumbai. The order was given by a bench headed by Justice Oka who asked government to file an affidavit by July 20. Under this scheme, additional Floor Space Index is given for such areas where it is proposed to undertake cluster developments. The state has proposed to allow such development in Mumbai, Thane, Kalyan, Mira-Bhayander, Virar, Dombivali, Bhiwandi, Ulhasnagar, Ambarnath, Badlapur, Palghar, Dahanu and Jawahar. All the corporations in these places have been made respondents. The PIL, filed by Dattatray Dhond, a resident of Thane, contended that before implementing such a scheme, it was necessary for the authorities to conduct 'Impact Assessment Study' to determine the infrastructure needs of these areas. With cluster development, necessary infrastructure such as roads, houses, gardens, open spaces, greenery, markets, schools, hospitals, amenities, shops and commercial establishments are required to be set up. Hence, it was essential to carry out "Impact Assessment Study' of the areas. The petitioner said he was not against the cluster development but he wanted a systematic development which would also fulfil the infrastructural needs of the areas where such projects were being undertaken. For instance, he said, the city limits could be extended upto a particular place till planned infrastructure was developed in the area. In the next two decades in Navi Mumbai, a population of 28 lakh would be included and hence the load on existing infrastructure would increase. It was, therefore, necessary to plan additional infrastructure before allowing cluster developments in this city.
2014-06-19Panel to check illegal constructions - Mumbai Mirr
PANEL TO CHECK ILLEGAL CONSTRUCTIONS Mumbai Mirror | Updated: Jun 20, 2014, 01.02 AM IST Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan on Thursday appointed a 15-member committee, to be headed by the municipal commissioner, to prepare a policy for preventing illegal constructions. The members include commissioner of the Mumbai Metropolitan Regional Development Authority, managing director of CIDCO, municipal commissioners of Thane, Nagpur, Pimpri-Chinchwad, Pune, Ulhasnagar and Aurangabad municipal corporations, chairman of the Nagpur Improvement Trust, and CEO of Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation. The committee will suggest steps to prevent illegal constructions, and to set up of an effective machinery for streamlining and expediting permissions for constructions.
2014-06-19BMC commissioner to head panel on illegal construc
BMC commissioner to head panel on illegal constructions TNN | Jun 20, 2014, 12.08 AM IST Mumbai: BMC chief Sitaram Kunte will head a committee to frame a policy to tackle the problem of illegal constructions in Maharashtra, chief minister Prithviraj Chavan announced on Thursday. The committee will look at how to take concrete action against existing illegal constructions and suggest a system to streamline procedures for granting permissions for building construction. Besides the BMC chief, the committee will include the municipal commissioners of Thane, Pimpri-Chinchwad, Pune and Ulhasnagar. The metropolitan commissioner, MMRDA, and the CEO of MIDC will also be members. The government's decision seems to be a fallout of the Campa Cola imbroglio.
2014-06-19Maharashtra sets up panel on illegal constructions
Maharashtra sets up panel on illegal constructions TNN | Jun 20, 2014, 12.45 AM IST NAGPUR: With less than four months left for completion of the current government's term, chief minister Prithviraj Chavan who also holds the urban development portfolio has finally set up a committee to finalize a policy to check illegal and unauthorized construction activity in all urban centres of the state. The decision announced on Thursday says a high-power committee would apart from suggesting ways to check illegal constructions, also formulate a policy to streamline processes for faster and smoother clearances for building constructions in urban areas. The committee will be headed by the Mumbai municipal commissioner. The committee would comprise Mumbai metropolitan region development authority commissioner, managing director of CIDCO, municipal commissioners of Nagpur, Thane, Pune, Pimpri-Chichwad, Ulhasnagar, Aurangabad and chairman of Nagpur Improvement Trust, MIDC's CEO, director of municipal administration, director of town planning among others. Unauthorized building construction is a major problem ion almost every city. While the Campa Cola episode in Mumbai is a case in point where several floors were built without approval, such cases abound in smaller cities like Nagpur and often go unchecked. But with hardly three months before state elections are announced, there is a serious doubt as to what this committee would achieve.
2014-06-19Prithviraj Chavan sets up 15-member committee on i
Prithviraj Chavan sets up 15-member committee on illegal constructions BY PTI | UPDATED: JUN 19, 2014, 10.16 PM IST MUMBAI: Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan today appointed a 15-member committee, to be headed by Mumbai municipal commissioner, to prepare a policy for preventing illegal constructions. The members include commissioner of the Mumbai Metropolitan Regional Development Authority, managing director of CIDCO, municipal commissioners of Thane, Nagpur, Pimpri-Chinchwad, Pune, Ulhasnagar and Aurangabad municipal corporations, chairman of the Nagpur Improvement Trust, and CEO of Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation. A statement from Chief Minister's office said the committee will suggest steps to prevent illegal constructions, and to set up of an effective machinery for streamlining and expediting permissions for constructions.
Prithviraj Chavan sets up 15-member committee on i
2014-06-18Lack of appeal hamper Indian brands' global growth
Lack of appeal hamper Indian brands’ global growth Wednesday, 18 June 2014 With global fashion labels queuing up to open stores in India, home-grown Indian apparel brands are perking up their collections to match global sensibilities. Rising fashion and brand awareness among the Indian consumers, coupled with a rise in disposal incomes, have made Indian apparel manufacturers realize the need to create global brands. However, for now, it’s the global brands who are doing exceptionally well in India.GlobalLack of appeal hamper Indian brands’ global growth labels present in India like Zara, Tommy Hilfiger, Marks & Spencer and Benetton are chalking out aggressive strategies to attract consumers with their collections, catering to the sensibilities of a global audience. This is where Indian apparel manufacturers fail because their collections are mostly created thinking about Indian consumer preferences instead of global audiences. Creating global appeal So what should Indian apparel manufacturers do for global acceptance of their brands? International brands focus on one main idea which is globally aspirational. While Indian audiences are no different, with the transformation they are experiencing of late, but diverse Indian cultures and traditions simultaneously forces them to end up manufacturing lines that appeal more to domestic tastes. Only 8 percent of India’s apparel retail is organized and the larger part of the business is unorganized. In fact, private labels do much more business in trade B2B (business to business) reaching out to the smallest of retail markets across the country. Many of these labels focus on a specific lifestyle categories, like jeans, pants, shirts, dresses, salwar kameez, kids’ wear and so on and are wholesaled from small manufacturing hubs like Delhi’s Tank Road and Gandhi Nagar; Mumbai’s Ulhasnagar, Bellary, Kolkata and Tirupur. These places are creating products inspired by films and styles picked up from somewhere without having a definite statement. The demand for private labels developed by large fashion formats such as Shoppers Stop, Lifestyle, Max, Westside, Megamart and some regional MBOs as well as e-commerce giants such as Flipkart, Myntra, Jabong, Fashion & You, Snapdeal, Yebhi are leading the pace for private label manufacturing. Despite strength, no global appeal Indian textile and apparel industry is known across the globe because of its strengths. India happens to be among the biggest cotton producer in the world, is one of the largest textile manufacturer with companies like Arvind, Vardhman, Raymonds, Bombay Rayon producing and supplying world class fabrics to most major global brands such as GAP, Diesel, H&M, Zara, M&S among others. India also has some of the biggest garment manufacturers such as Shahi, Eastman, Pratibha supplying to top global brands. But despite this, manufacturers lack the mindset to create a global brand. This is because of the focus on selling and not building a brand as per demand. However, now big players like Arvind and Madura with a list of established brands in their portfolio are trying to bridge the gap.
2014-06-14How Campa Cola's terms will check illegal housing
How terms laid out by Campa Cola will check illegal housing in Mumbai Jun, 20 2014 14:01:08 IST When we talk of illegal structures, mostly residential, the reference is not to the slums that make Mumbai the slum capital of Maharashtra. It is about formal housing that people like us occupy, even if it was built without permission, built bigger than what was permitted, or built by deviating from the building code. In Maharashtra, illegal buildings simply abound. One estimate claims nearly a third of all buildings in Mumbai do not have an occupation certificate. Some 80,000 such structures in the Pimpri-Chinchwad-Pune metro region are also illegal.Ulhasnagar, smaller than Pimpri, has as many and Thane too comes close to that. Over time, Maharashtra has seen any number of slum dwellers being evacuated; their shanties swiftly razed to the extent that courts in the past had to step in, asking that it stay its bulldozers at least during monsoons. They didn’t raise the people’s angst as much as the demolitions of illegal but formal housing, like the Campa Cola structures, have. Campa Cola raises moral issues hard to duck though they are lost in the plethora of court cases seeking stays for demolitions. There are a lot more non-slum illegal structures than one can imagine. Should they be razed because there are illegalities, which spring from mischief not of the developers’ alone, their occupants mostly unaware of the infringements? The buyers-beware caveat prevails in law but they are wrong guys caught in the cleft end of the stick, a fact that now seems to have touched the conscience of the state, which is planning a new policy on regularising illegal structures. This new policy draft, interestingly, is to be prepared by a committee of a dozen municipal commissioners and two officials. This committee’s constitution itself raises two questions. One, civic bodies are the one of the two parties culpable in the rash of illegal buildings: developers propose deviations from building codes, with official machinery conniving by winking at them. Two, where are the other stakeholders, which are the city residents? The irony is that these illegal buildings neither sprouted overnight nor without the complicity of the civic officials. Once that's done and the flats sold, the civic bodies even collected taxes from them and charged twice the rate for the nectar of life, drinking water. The victims were the buyers alone. Unlike the rhetorical ‘why us?’ by the victims of this well-organised mischief, which has seen many get undeservingly richer, Campa Cola residents have asked a blunt question: who pays even if they are evacuated and their homes demolished? They have listed conditions (read here) which would require responses. It is unexplained why an entire township of swish apartments built on a land secured for peanuts in Powai to build housing for the poor is untouched, but Campa Cola is put in a quandary. That is clearly because issues of rights and wrongs of only specified buildings which, are taken up differently on case by case basis. Uniformity of approach has been lacking. Nor, why when civic bodies, of course in ignorance of the fact that plots under private forests, have allowed real estate development on them, the forest department is holding the owners to ransom and sought a review of the apex court order which freed them of liability if some costs were paid for re-afforestation. These 1.6 lakh apartments are in limbo. When the Powai township and the buildings on the private forests came up, there was – there must have been – an official promoting it, apart from the builder-developers. No effort has been initiated to find these people, who of course are officials in key positions with ability to shower discretion for a price, and take them to the law. Campa Cola residents have come out with the string of conditions which are clever indeed. Legal flats are not to be affected when pulling down the illegal, much like Shylock being allowed only his pound of flesh, not a drop of blood, and not rendered homeless even for a day. Since the parking spaces had nothing to do with the FSI consumption, they are to be protected. This can put the civic body in a bind. The 14 Campa Cola conditions come in useful and if met, would be one simple way of eliminating or reducing the illegal structures if generally applied henceforth. No more regularisation, case by case or for a group by Ordinance from time to time. Since the flats are illegal, the land’s share should accrue to the duped buyers. The properties of the successor of the erring builder, if the guy was dead, should be used to compensate the cheated buyers. If post-demolition, courts side with the apartment owners, the government should pay market price as compensation. More importantly, they want the civic officials to be punished. Identifying them is not impossible.
How Campa Cola
2014-06-14Maharashtra government approved bifurcation of Tha
Maharashtra government approved bifurcation of Thane district  14-JUN-2014 Jagran Josh recommends this article for Bank Exams, MBA Entrance Exams, Civil Services Exam, SSC Exams Suggested Readings: Other States, 2014 Current Affairs, June 2014 Current Affairs, State A+A- Who: bifurcation of Thane district What: approved by State Cabinet of Maharashtra to carve out Palghar as 36th district of the state When: 13 June 2014 State Cabinet of Maharashtra on 13 June 2014 approved the long pending proposal to bifurcate Thane district to carve out Palghar district from it. The bifurcation will be done on 1 August 2014 and with it, Palghar will become the 36th district of the state.Apart from this, the state government has decided to set aside 450 crore rupees to create infrastructure in Palghar.Regions that will remain as a part of Thane district after bifurcation are Thane, Kalyan, Ambernath, Ulhasnagar, Bhiwandi, Murbad and Shahapur. While the regions or talukas that will be carved out to form Palghar district are Palghar, Jawahar, Mokhada, Talasari, Vasai, Wada, Dahanu and Vikramgad. Population of the two districts after bifurcation • Thane district – about 80.58 lakh • Palghat district – about 1.10 crore Thane: As per the 2011 census, before bifurcation, Thane is the most populous district of India with nine revenue sub-divisions with 15 talukas and 1995 revenue villages. About demand of bifurcation The demand of bifurcation of the district has been pending since 1994 for better administration. The demand of bifurcation of Thane district has been in demand since mid 1980s. Following the demand the state government had conducted viability studies in the past. But the decision to bifurcate the district was reached on the basis of a committee appointed in October 2012 under the chairmanship of the Konkan divisional commissioner. Meanwhile, following the demands of formation of new districts in Vidarbha, the state government also decided to set up a committee to look into the demands of creation of new districts. 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Maharashtra government approved bifurcation of Tha
2014-06-14Maharashtra's Thane split to carve out state's 36t
Maharashtra's Thane split to carve out state's 36th district, Palghar news 14 June 2014 Thane, India's most populous district, has been split to carve out Palghar, which will now form Maharashtra's 36th district, following a decision by the state cabinet on Friday.With Palghar as its headquarters, the new district will comprise eight talukas, including Palghar, Vasai, Mokhada, Talasari, Jawahar, Wada, Dahanu and Vikramgad, with a large tribal populace living in remote areas. The residual Thane district, which is mostly urban, will have seven talukas, including Thane, Kalyan, Bhiwandi, Ulhasnagar, Murbad, Ambernath and Shahapur. With the division, much of Thane district's large tribal population will come under the new Palghar district, which will help the tribal population get better and faster access to government services, say district officials.They say the division has been driven by administrative convenience. With a new collectorate coming up in Palghar, the district headquarters will become more accessible to people living in the tribal belt of Palghar. It would also reduce the distance and travel expenses for people living in other talukas as well. Chief minister Prithviraj Chavan said the new district would start functioning by 15 August and will have 56 government offices located in Palghar to start with. "The new district will need about 4,300 government employees, including 155 Class-I officers to manage the daily administration," officials of the Thane collectorate said, quoting from an earlier report prepared by the Konkan divisional commissioner. The report, prepared by then Konkan divisional commissioner Vijay Nahata, is also reported to have suggested two names for the new district - the existing Palghar or rename it 'Sagar' due to its largely coastal nature. The creation of the new administrative headquarters and the initiation of the various schemes will cost the state government around Rs466 crore. Sources said the state currently has a budget provision of a little over Rs300 crore to set up the offices of the district collector, superintendent of police, district court and zilla parishad office. The state government, however, has earmarked funds for tribal development and with the formation of Palghar, utilisation of funds will be better. With the division of Thane, the district's representation in the assembly will reduce to 18 from the existing 24 MLAs. Palghar will have six assembly segments. The decision to split Thane has given rise to demands for the division of other bigger districts like Nagpur, Gadchiroli, Chandrapur, Buldana, Amravati, Yavatmal and Wardha.
2014-06-14Thane district will finally be split into 2 parts
Thane district will finally be split into 2 parts from August 15 Jun 14, 2014, 05.06 AM IST THANE: India's most populated district, Thane, will finally be split into two — one a highly urbanised district led by the Thane collectorate and the other with a more tribal populace living in remote areas. Administrative convenience is the main driver of this move. The creation of the state's 36th district, likely to be called Palghar, was cleared by the state cabinet on Friday. Chief minister Prithviraj Chavan said the new district would start functioning by August 15, and will have 56 government offices located in Palghar. "The new district will need a new administrative set-up, right from offices to appointment of staff," a senior official from the Thane collectorate said, adding, "the Konkan divisional commissioner in his report said the new district will need about 4,300 government employees, including 155 Class-I officers to manage the daily administration." The report, prepared by then Konkan divisional commissioner Vijay Nahata, also suggested two names for the new district—continue with the existing Palghar or rename it 'Sagar' due to its largely coastal topography. The cost of setting up the new administration and starting various schemes in the new district is expected to be around Rs 466 crore. Sources said the state will have to budget for over Rs 300 crore just to set up the offices of the district collector, superintendent of police, district court and zilla parishad office. While district boundaries will be redrawn, the proposed Palghar district will include the eight tribal-dominated talukas of Mokhada, Jawahar, Talasari, Vikramgadh, Wada, Dahanu, Palghar and Vasai. Thane district's jurisdiction will cover the urban talukas of Thane, Bhiwandi, Kalyan, Ulhasnagar, Ambernath, Murbad and Shahapur. Barring Vasai and Dahanu, all other talukas in the new district are known for remotely located tribal villages where malnutrition, health, education and transportation have been major concerns. "Since there will be a division of the population, administering public service schemes will become easier," said a senior Mantralaya bureaucrat who has earlier worked in Thane in various capacities. The division of Thane district had become a political issue due to its large area and population. In fact, there have also been demands to trifurcate the revenue and land record administration. The bifurcation was earlier scheduled for May 1, 2013, but was postponed due to some procedural issues. The last districts carved out in the state were Bhandara-Gondiya and Hingoli in 1995. The split will also redraw the political map of the region as Thane district's representation in the assembly will reduce to 18 from the existing 24 MLAs. Palghar will have six assembly segments. "Thane is dominated by the Shiv Sena except for Navi Mumbai which is controlled by senior NCP leader Ganesh Naik. Palghar district is under complete control of Hitendra Thakur and his family. With the split in the region, political equations too will change as these leaders will now have to concentrate on other areas," a political analyst said, adding, "Citizens, especially the tribal population, can benefit more than politicians, as implementation of welfare schemes can now be more focused according to the needs of both districts." Following the government's in-principle approval to splitting Thane, Nagpur MLA Nitin Raut demanded that eight new districts be created from existing ones in Vidarbha region. He said Nagpur district could be divided into Metro Region, Katol and Nagpur, Gadchiroli can be split to create a new district of Aheri, while Chandrapur could be split to create Chimur-Brahmapuri district. There is a long-pending demand to form Khamgaon district by dividing Buldana, similarly tribal parts of Amravati could together form Achalpur district, Pusad split from Yavatmal and Aashti from Wardha districts.
2014-06-13India's most populous district Thane to be split;
India's most populous district Thane to be split; Palghar set to be Maharashtra's 36th district By Agencies |Posted 13-Jun-2014 India's most populous district - Thane - will be split and a new district Palghar carved out of it soon. With this Palghar will become Maharashtra's 36th district Mumbai: Palghar is all set to be Maharashtra's 36th district with the state cabinet today approving the long pending proposal to bifurcate Thane district. Eight talukas of Palghar, Jawahar, Mokhada, Talasari, Vasai, Wada, Dahanu and Vikramgad will now form part of Palghar district. The new district headquarters will now be stationed at Palghar. While Thane, Kalyan, Ambernath, Ulhasnagar, Bhiwandi, Murbad and Shahapur will continue to be part of Thane district. The government will set aside Rs 450 crore to create infrastructure in Palghar and the new district will come into being from August 1, government sources said. With the proposal for bifurcation of Thane district cleared, there were more demands for creation of new districts from within the cabinet, they said. EGS minister Nitin Raut demanded new districts be created in Vidarbha as well for better governance. To which, it was decided to set up a committee to look into the demands and take decisions accordingly. Thane district has seven municipal corporations and 24 MLAs and there has been demand for bifurcation of the district for better administration. Pending since 20 years, the proposal to split Thane - with a population of over 12 million, nearly 10 percent of the state population - was approved by the state cabinet here Friday, but immediately sparked protests from various opposition parties, including the Shiv Sena.Besides being the most populous district in the country, it also has the largest number of seven municipal corporations for any district in the country, nestling in its 9,600 sq. km area.In Maharashtra, after Mumbai, it is the second biggest in terms of number of assembly segments - 24 in four Lok Sabha constituencies, and is the third most industrialised district in the state.With history dating it back to 1817, Thane today offers some stark contrasts. On one hand, with the ongoing urbanisation Thane city is dotted with skyscrapers, swank malls and multiplexes, flyovers and wide roads, and on the other, barely a few score km away are some of the most wretched tribal villages and hamlets in the hilly forested regions and tiny fishing villages on the coast.Terming the bifurcation as politically motivated in view of the ensuing assembly elections, the Shiv Sena and other parties had demanded trifurcation on the basis of the coastal, hilly and urban make-up of Thane.Vasai Independent legislator Vivek Pandit has demanded that since the problems of these three distinct areas are different, the state government should have split Thane into three districts to serve the people better.This is the first major bifurcation of a district after 1999, when Gondiya and Gadchiroli were created in the eastern Vidarbha region of the state, taking the total count to 35 districts in Maharashtra.
2014-06-13Palghar to be Maharashtra's newest district - Busi
Palghar to be Maharashtra's newest district Mumbai June 14, 2014 Last Updated at 00:14 IST The Maharashtra cabinet on Friday paved the way for formation of the state’s newest district, Palghar, out of Thane. Palghar would be Maharashtra’s 36th district and would come into existence on August 15. The announcement in this regard was made by Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan late on Friday evening. Political parties and non-government organisations have been demanding Thane district’s bifurcation for three-and-a-half decades. Two years ago, a section of the ruling Congress-Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) alliance had made a pitch for a trifurcation of Thane into Thane, Palghar and Vasai districts. However, the government did not consider it, following strong opposition from various sections. The primary reasons behind the demands for Thane’s division are its size and spread, which make administration quite a challenging affair. The area of the district is 9,558 sq km. According to the 2011 Census of India, Thane is the most populated district in the nation, with 11,054,131 inhabitants. Its population is 9.84 per cent of Maharashtra’s population and its density is 1,157 people per sq km. Currently, Thane district comprises 15 talukas — Thane, Kalyan, Murbad, Bhiwandi, Shahapur, Vasai, Ulhasnagar, Ambernath, Dahanu, Palghar, Talasari, Jawhar, Mokhada, Vada and Vikramgad. The district has 24 Assembly seats and they are key for the Congress-NCP alliance during the forthcoming Assembly election slated for September-October. Thane is also the third-most industrialised district in Maharashtra. According to the information available with the state revenue department, 51.75 per cent of Thane’s work force is engaged in agriculture and allied activities, 6.19 per cent in manufacturing, service and cottage industries and the remaining 30.69 per cent in other activities. Women comprise 22.89 per cent of the district’s total work force. With the proposed division, Thane district will now include the rapidly-growing urban talukas of Thane, Kalyan, Murbad, Bhiwandi, Shahapur, Ulhasnagar and Ambernath. On the other hand, Palghar district will comprise the tribal-dominated, coastal talukas of Dahanu, Palghar, Talasari, Jawhar, Mokhada, Vada, Vikramgad and Vasai. The government will dissolve the Thane Zilla Parishad while the existing Thane District Central Cooperative Bank will continue to exist for both the districts. The proposed division of Thane will put an additional burden of Rs 430 crore on the state exchequer. On Friday, the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party and Shiv Sena attacked the government for keeping them in the dark on the politically-sensitive issue of Thane’s bifurcation. The Shiv Sena alleged that Thane was being divided for purely political convenience.
Palghar to be Maharashtra
2014-06-13Maharashtra cabinet approves Thane district divisi
Maharashtra cabinet approves Thane district division to create Palghar Last Updated: Friday, June 13, 2014 - 15:04 Mumbai: Palghar is all set to be Maharashtra`s 36th district with the state cabinet today approving the long pending proposal to bifurcate Thane district. Eight talukas of Palghar, Jawahar, Mokhada, Talasari, Vasai, Wada, Dahanu and Vikramgad will now form part of Palghar district. The new district headquarters will now be stationed at Palghar. While Thane, Kalyan, Ambernath, Ulhasnagar, Bhiwandi, Murbad and Shahapur will continue to be part of Thane district.The government will set aside Rs 450 crore to create infrastructure in Palghar and the new district will come into being from August 1, government sources said. With the proposal for bifurcation of Thane district cleared, there were more demands for creation of new districts from within the cabinet, they said. EGS minister Nitin Raut demanded new districts be created in Vidarbha as well for better governance. To which, it was decided to set up a committee to look into the demands and take decisions accordingly. Thane district has seven municipal corporations and 24 MLAs and there has been demand for bifurcation of the district for better administration.
2014-06-13Maharashtra cabinet approves division of Thane dis
Maharashtra cabinet approves division of Thane district to create Palghar district Fri, 13 Jun 2014-04:25pm , Mumbai , PTI Palghar is all set to be Maharashtra's 36th district with the state cabinet on Friday approving the long pending proposal to bifurcate Thane district. Eight talukas of Palghar, Jawahar, Mokhada, Talasari, Vasai, Wada, Dahanu and Vikramgad will now form part of Palghar district. The new district headquarters will now be stationed at Palghar. While Thane, Kalyan, Ambernath, Ulhasnagar, Bhiwandi, Murbad and Shahapur will continue to be part of Thane district. The government will set aside Rs 450 crore to create infrastructure in Palghar and the new district will come into being from August 1, government sources said. With the proposal for bifurcation of Thane district cleared, there were more demands for creation of new districts from within the cabinet, they said. EGS minister Nitin Raut demanded new districts be created in Vidarbha as well for better governance. To which, it was decided to set up a committee to look into the demands and take decisions accordingly. Thane district has seven municipal corporations and 24 MLAs and there has been demand for bifurcation of the district for better administration. Meanwhile, the decision to bifurcate the district was received with mixed reactions in Thane and Palghar on Friday. People in Palghar welcomed the move and celebrated by distributing sweets and bursting crackers in main squares in the town. Also, leaders of both Congress and the NCP came out in the open and celebrated the announcement. City Congress President Bal Purnekar said the government had taken the right decision and it will be beneficial to all. Educational, communication, health and other infrastructure including the water facility needs to be provided in the new district and that requires sufficient planning and funds, he said. However, they were some who said that the government should have considered the tribal population of the district while taking the decision
Maharashtra cabinet approves division of Thane dis
2014-06-13Chief minister Prithviraj Chavan moots new law to
Chief minister Prithviraj Chavan moots new law to stop illegal constructions DNA CORRESPONDENT | Fri, 13 Jun 2014-07:15am , DNA Chief minister Prithviraj Chavan has said the government will formulate a law to stop illegal constructions that could include rehabilitation of illegal residents and action against builders and officials responsible for this illegal activity. Chavan was replying to a question in the state legislative assembly on Thursday on relief for residents in Pimpri Chinchwad whose buildings have been declared illegal and are to be demolished. Summing up the sentiment of the members in the house, speaker Dilip Walse-Patil asked the government to consider immediate relief for the residents as "a sword hangs over the heads" of those who will lose their houses. In March, the high court directed that more than 66,000 illegal constructions in Pimpri Chinchwad should be demolished. "No relief can be given by us as the court's order has to be followed. What the state government can do is to approach the court for some relief and we will do that," the chief minister said. "In the limits of Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation alone there are 66,324 illegal constructions. In all, there are over 1.25 lakh illegal constructions. Since a permanent solution to the problem of illegal constructions needs to be worked out, a committee has also been set up to look into ways to resolve the issue," he said. The 14- member committee has been set up under the aegis of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation. "There are several issues like reservation of DP road, green zone, buffer zone, ordnance depots, bus depots, that have to looked into. These cannot be overlooked as the city has to grow," Chavan said. Members of the house mentioned that the issue affected several cities and therefore requires a law that is applicable across the state. The speaker suggested that a two-day extended session be held to focus on resolving the issue. Some members also sought to know why the solution worked out in Ulhasnagar (where illegal structures were ordered to be regularised) could not be applied in other places. The chief minister responded saying that this was not possible as most structures in other places did not pass the structural stability test.
Chief minister Prithviraj Chavan moots new law to
2014-06-13State to get new district from Aug - Mumbai Mirror
STATE TO GET NEW DISTRICT FROM AUG Mumbai Mirror | Updated: Jun 14, 2014, 01.53 AM IST The state cabinet has finally decided to divide Thane and carve out a new district - Palghar - as the 36th district. The eight talukas of Palghar -- Jawahar, Mokhada, Talasari, Vasai, Wada, Dahanu and Vikramgad -- will now form the new district. Thane, Kalyan, Ambernath, Ulhasnagar, Bhiwandi, Murbad and Shahapur, on the other hand, will continue to be part of Thane district. The government will set aside Rs 450 crore for the new district that will come into being from August 1. 20% quota for Maratha community likely The Congress-NCP government has declared that it will soon clear 20 per cent reservations in education and jobs for Maratha community. This has, however, angered some OBC leaders. Industries Minister Narayan Rane, heading the committee for reservations for Marathas, said, "The state has decided to give 20 per reservations to Marathas. This will be cleared by the cabinet after June 20 when the Code of Conduct for state council elections ends," Rane said. At present, the state has 52 per cent reservations in jobs and education. This will raise the quota limit to 72 per cent. The Supreme Court had earlier put a ceiling on quotas at 50 per cent and hence could legally challenge the state's decision. Rane, however, said, "Our survey proved the economic backwardness of the community, so the court's ruling will not come in our way." MMB
State to get new district from Aug - Mumbai Mirror
2014-06-13Maharashtra cabinet approves Thane district divisi
India's most populous district Thane to be split; Palghar set to be Maharashtra's 36th district By Agencies | Posted 13-Jun-2014 Mumbai: Palghar is all set to be Maharashtra's 36th district with the state cabinet today approving the long pending proposal to bifurcate Thane district. Eight talukas of Palghar, Jawahar, Mokhada, Talasari, Vasai, Wada, Dahanu and Vikramgad will now form part of Palghar district. The new district headquarters will now be stationed at Palghar. While Thane, Kalyan, Ambernath, Ulhasnagar, Bhiwandi, Murbad and Shahapur will continue to be part of Thane district. The government will set aside Rs 450 crore to create infrastructure in Palghar and the new district will come into being from August 1, government sources said. With the proposal for bifurcation of Thane district cleared, there were more demands for creation of new districts from within the cabinet, they said. EGS minister Nitin Raut demanded new districts be created in Vidarbha as well for better governance. To which, it was decided to set up a committee to look into the demands and take decisions accordingly. Thane district has seven municipal corporations and 24 MLAs and there has been demand for bifurcation of the district for better administration.Pending since 20 years, the proposal to split Thane - with a population of over 12 million, nearly 10 percent of the state population - was approved by the state cabinet here Friday, but immediately sparked protests from various opposition parties, including the Shiv Sena. Besides being the most populous district in the country, it also has the largest number of seven municipal corporations for any district in the country, nestling in its 9,600 sq. km area. In Maharashtra, after Mumbai, it is the second biggest in terms of number of assembly segments - 24 in four Lok Sabha constituencies, and is the third most industrialised district in the state. With history dating it back to 1817, Thane today offers some stark contrasts. On one hand, with the ongoing urbanisation Thane city is dotted with skyscrapers, swank malls and multiplexes, flyovers and wide roads, and on the other, barely a few score km away are some of the most wretched tribal villages and hamlets in the hilly forested regions and tiny fishing villages on the coast. Terming the bifurcation as politically motivated in view of the ensuing assembly elections, the Shiv Sena and other parties had demanded trifurcation on the basis of the coastal, hilly and urban make-up of Thane. Vasai Independent legislator Vivek Pandit has demanded that since the problems of these three distinct areas are different, the state government should have split Thane into three districts to serve the people better. This is the first major bifurcation of a district after 1999, when Gondiya and Gadchiroli were created in the eastern Vidarbha region of the state, taking the total count to 35 districts in Maharashtra.
2014-06-13State gives nod to split Thane district - Indian E
State gives nod to split Thane district By: Express News Service | Mumbai | Published:June 14, 2014 2:30 am The state cabinet Friday gave its nod to bifurcate Thane district and create an additional district of Palghar, more than 20 years after the proposal to split India’s most populous district was made. The proposed Palghar district will include tribal-dominated tehsils of Palghar, Jawahar, Mokahda, Talasari, Vikramgad, Wada, Dahanu and Vasai. The urban and more developed talukas of Thane, Bhiwandi, Kalyan-Dombivli, Ulhasnagar and Shahapur will remain in Thane district. As per 2011 census, Thane, with nearly 1.1 crore residents, had emerged as India’s most populous district. It has seven municipal corporations and five municipal councils, the highest in any district in the country. The cabinet also gave its nod for granting of Rs 465.89 crore that will be required to set up the administrative infrastructure for the new district. At present, Maharashtra has 35 districts, the newest being Gondia and Gadchiroli, which were created in 1999. There are demands to split other districts in the state as well. While senior minister Nitin Raut has mooted the proposal to create eight new districts in Vidarbha, there have been demands to split the districts of Nashik, Ahmednagar and Dhule as well.
2014-06-12CM plans policy to legalise unauthorised structure
CM plans policy to legalise unauthorised structures By: Express News Service | Mumbai | Published:June 13, 2014 5:16 am Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan Thursday declared that the government would bring out a uniform policy for regularisation of unauthorised structures across the state. The chief minister also announced the setting up of a 14-member high-level panel headed by Mumbai Municipal Commissioner Sitaram Kunte to evolve the policy’s roadmap. The committee will also comprise municipal commissioners from other regions and town planning officers. Chavan has, however, turned down a demand for blanket regularisation of illegal structures in a municipal corporation on the lines of the model applied in Ulhasnagar earlier, arguing that this “the model achieved nothing”. But he hinted that the government was even open to amending norms to bring down the penalty collected from such unauthorised structures as part of the property tax. While ruling alliance legislators, especially those from the Nationalist Congress Party, have been pushing for regularisation of illegal structures, Chavan made it clear that those existing on land reserved for public purposes or on defence land and riverbeds could not be regularised. In the Assembly, NCP legislator Vilas Lande had raised a calling attention motion demanding that the state halt the ongoing demolition drive against illegal constructions in the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) limits and regularise constructions as per the assurance made previously. As many as 66,324 structures out of the 3.8 lakh existing in PCMC are illegal. After a Bombay High Court verdict on October 4, 2013 directed demolition of these illegal structures, the PCMC has so far served notices on 3,035 structures and razed 614. Chavan, however, said demolition of all these structures was “impractical” as it would involve huge manpower and resource deployment. Even as Lande, another NCP legislator Bapu Pathare and some Maharashtra Navnirman Sena legislators insisted that the government should stay the demolition drive, Chavan said the government would file a petition in the court in this regard. Replying to the calling attention, Chavan said about 80,000 structures were unauthorised in Pimpri-Chinchwad alone. Besides 66,324 in PCMC limits, another 16,700-odd structures exist in the area falling under the Pimpri-Chinchwad New Town Development Authority and 1,300 structures on land owned by the Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation in the region. Ruling out universal regularisation, Chavan said the panel would be asked to look into the feasibility of changing land use zone to regularise structures on NDZs and green zones. For structures that have come up in violation of development control regulations, including floor space index (FSI) illegalities and open space violations among others, the CM said the committee would be asked to probe whether such illegalities could be condoned by charging premium or using discretionary powers enjoyed by civic commissioners. After BJP member Girish Bapat sought action against builders and officials responsible for illegal constructions, Chavan declared that the committee would be asked to probe this aspect too. Even as Lande stood up to express his dissatisfaction over the reply, Speaker Dilip Walse Patil intervened. He asked Chavan to ensure that the committee submitted its report in a time-bound manner and some interim relief was granted to those affected. He even suggested that the government could convene a special two-day session to discuss the proposed policy on illegal structures.
CM plans policy to legalise unauthorised structure
2014-06-12Committee to prepare new law against illegal bldgs
Committee to prepare new law against illegal bldgs: Chavan Press Trust of India | Mumbai June 12, 2014 Last Updated at 15:41 IST A 14-member committee headed by BMC commissioner has been entrusted with the task of preparing a new comprehensive law to stop illegal structures from proliferating in urban areas, Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan told the Legislative Assembly here today. "Ulhasnagar model of regularising illegal structures has not yielded any results and the same yardstick could not be applied to other cities as each one has different problems and issues," Chavan said while replying to a debate on illegal structures in Pimpri-Chinchwad. "In Ulhasnagar, out of the 6,623 illegal structures, not even 100 have been cleared for regularisation. Structural stability is a must for regularising," he said The committee headed by Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) commissioner will comprise commissioners of civic bodies from the state, he said adding that he has sought statistical analysis of illegal structures in Pimpri-Chinchwad by June 30. Chavan lamented lack of a strong urban governance machinery in the state. He also said 11 districts in the state don't have a regional plan. He admitted that regularising illegal structures was a "moral hazard" and need of the hour was to find a middle path. Pimpri-Chinchwad has three planning authorities out of which 66,324 structures are in the municipal corporation limits, under the new township development authority there are about 16,000 structures while in MIDC area there are 1,300 structures which are illegal, he said. The Bombay High Court had earlier sent eviction notices to 66,324 structures. According to HC orders, the civic body had demolished some structures and cases were filed against those making illegal constructions, the CM said. Girish Bapat (BJP) demanded that the structures be regularised by levy of heavy penalty and also action be taken against the developers and authorities who allow illegal structures to come up. Vilas Lande (Independent) criticised Chavan's response saying that he had not said anything concrete to provide relief to the people. Speaker Dilip Walse Patil asked the Chief Minister to consider providing interim relief to the people in illegal structures and a time-bound programme be undertaken to prevent such structures from coming up. A special session of state Assembly can be convened for passing a new law on illegal structures, he said. Chavan said it was important to categorise the illegal structures and agreed to request the High Court for granting relief to genuine people.
2014-06-12102 flat-owners defy SC - Calcutta Telegraph
102 flat-owners defy SC Friday , June 13 , 2014 OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT Mumbai, June 12: The residents of Campa Cola Compound’s 102 illegal flats facing demolition defied a Supreme Court order asking them to vacate and refused to hand over keys within a deadline that ended this evening. Two of the flats in the compound in Worli, a western Mumbai suburb, are in the name of Lata Mangeshkar. As the clock ticked past the 5pm time set by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) for the handover of keys, the residents wrote to commissioner Sitaram Kunte with a charter of 14 demands. Rajesh Kumar Varma, who owns one of the apartments, said: “I am ready to give my keys but before that, I need a sworn affidavit from the chief minister (Prithviraj Chavan) and the MC (municipal commissioner) saying all illegal constructions in Mumbai would be demolished and nothing would be regularised by nefarious means.”The residents also spoke against ordinances that they claimed previous administrations had used to regularise illegal buildings. Varma continued: “No law or ordinance will be passed by the present or future government to regularise any illegal construction and if this is violated, the incumbent minister or official would be tried in a fast-track court.” The allusion was to a 2006 decision by the then Vilasrao Deshmukh government to regularise 855 illegal houses in Thane’s Ulhasnagar through an ordinance. In the Campa Cola case, the Chavan-led Congress-NCP government has ruled out doing so, though the chief minister told the Assembly today a 14-member panel headed by BMC commissioner Kunte had been set up to prepare a new law to stop illegal structures. Some of the seven apartment blocks in the Campa Cola complex have up to 20 floors instead of the permitted five. The residents demanded immediate attachment of properties of the three builders who built the illegal floors and the BMC officials who connived with them, so that the flat-owners could be compensated. Another resident said their legal options had not been exhausted yet. The Supreme Court had last week rejected their review petition, filed on “humanitarian” grounds, against an earlier verdict. A curative petition is also pending. “Our curative petition will be heard in July and we need time till the petition is decided. But the civic administration, not as prompt against other illegal constructions, is adamant on our eviction. There is no question of handing over our keys unless our charter of demands is agreed to. We will stay here, we will die here,” said the resident. The Shiv Sena-run BMC seems to be treading with caution and avoiding a confrontation, unlike in November 2013 when it had sent bulldozers. Civic sources suggested a calibrated approach, saying they would first inform the Supreme Court its orders had been defied, followed by a fresh notice under Section 488 of the BMC Act on June 17. The provision allows civic officials to enter people’s premises for eviction if its orders are defied. Former Mumbai police chief Julio Ribeiro today joined prominent citizens who have backed the residents. “I have written to the BMC chief asking what action the corporation has taken against the officials who connived with the builders. It is unjust that only the residents of the illegal flats are facing action,” Ribeiro said. Earlier this week, Lata Mangeshkar had sought support for the residents, without mentioning that she owns two of the flats. In the Assembly today, Speaker Dilip Walse Patil asked the chief minister to consider interim relief to people living in illegal structures. He also suggested a special session for passing the law planned against such constructions.
2014-06-12Committee to prepare new law against illegal build
Committee to prepare new law against illegal buildings: Maharashtra CM Prithviraj Chavan PTI | Jun 12, 2014, 07.40 PM IST MUMBAI: A 14-member committee headed by BMC commissioner has been entrusted with the task of preparing a new comprehensive law to stop illegal structures from proliferating in urban areas, Maharashtra chief minister Prithviraj Chavan told the Legislative Assembly here today. "Ulhasnagar model of regularising illegal structures has not yielded any results and the same yardstick could not be applied to other cities as each one has different problems and issues," Chavan said while replying to a debate on illegal structures in Pimpri-Chinchwad. "In Ulhasnagar, out of the 6,623 illegal structures, not even 100 have been cleared for regularisation. Structural stability is a must for regularising," he said. The committee headed by Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) commissioner will comprise commissioners of civic bodies from the state, he said adding that he has sought statistical analysis of illegal structures in Pimpri-Chinchwad by June 30.Chavan lamented lack of a strong urban governance machinery in the state. He also said 11 districts in the state don't have a regional plan. He admitted that regularising illegal structures was a "moral hazard" and need of the hour was to find a middle path. Pimpri-Chinchwad has three planning authorities out of which 66,324 structures are in the municipal corporation limits, under the new township development authority there are about 16,000 structures while in MIDC area there are 1,300 structures which are illegal, he said.The Bombay high court had earlier sent eviction notices to 66,324 structures. According to HC orders, the civic body had demolished some structures and cases were filed against those making illegal constructions, the CM said. Girish Bapat (BJP) demanded that the structures be regularised by levy of heavy penalty and also action be taken against the developers and authorities who allow illegal structures to come up.Vilas Lande (Independent) criticised Chavan's response saying that he had not said anything concrete to provide relief to the people. Speaker Dilip Walse Patil asked the chief minister to consider providing interim relief to the people in illegal structures and a time-bound programme be undertaken to prevent such structures from coming up.A special session of state Assembly can be convened for passing a new law on illegal structures, he said. Chavan said it was important to categorise the illegal structures and agreed to request the High Court for granting relief to genuine people.
2014-06-12Committee to prepare new law against illegal build
Committee to prepare new law against illegal buildings: Chavan Last Updated: Thursday, June 12, 2014 - 15:57 Mumbai: A 14-member committee headed by BMC commissioner has been entrusted with the task of preparing a new comprehensive law to stop illegal structures from proliferating in urban areas, Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan told the Legislative Assembly here on Thursday. "Ulhasnagar model of regularising illegal structures has not yielded any results and the same yardstick could not be applied to other cities as each one has different problems and issues," Chavan said while replying to a debate on illegal structures in Pimpri-Chinchwad. "In Ulhasnagar, out of the 6,623 illegal structures, not even 100 have been cleared for regularisation. Structural stability is a must for regularising," he said. The committee headed by Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) commissioner will comprise commissioners of civic bodies from the state, he said adding that he has sought statistical analysis of illegal structures in Pimpri-Chinchwad by June 30. Chavan lamented lack of a strong urban governance machinery in the state. He also said 11 districts in the state don`t have a regional plan.He admitted that regularising illegal structures was a "moral hazard" and need of the hour was to find a middle path. Pimpri-Chinchwad has three planning authorities out of which 66,324 structures are in the municipal corporation limits, under the new township development authority there are about 16,000 structures while in MIDC area there are 1,300 structures which are illegal, he said. The Bombay High Court had earlier sent eviction notices to 66,324 structures. According to HC orders, the civic body had demolished some structures and cases were filed against those making illegal constructions, the CM said. Girish Bapat (BJP) demanded that the structures be regularised by levy of heavy penalty and also action be taken against the developers and authorities who allow illegal structures to come up. Vilas Lande (Independent) criticised Chavan`s response saying that he had not said anything concrete to provide relief to the people. Speaker Dilip Walse Patil asked the Chief Minister to consider providing interim relief to the people in illegal structures and a time-bound programme be undertaken to prevent such structures from coming up. A special session of state Assembly can be convened for passing a new law on illegal structures, he said. Chavan said it was important to categorise the illegal structures and agreed to request the High Court for granting relief to genuine people.
2014-06-12Committee to prepare new law against illegal build
Committee to prepare new law against illegal buildings: Chavan PTI [Updated:12 Jun 2014, 4:31 PM IST] Mumbai: A 14-member committee headed by BMC commissioner has been entrusted with the task of preparing a new comprehensive law to stop illegal structures from proliferating in urban areas, Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan told the Legislative Assembly here today. “Ulhasnagar model of regularising illegal structures has not yielded any results and the same yardstick could not be applied to other cities as each one has different problems and issues,” Chavan said while replying to a debate on illegal structures in Pimpri-Chinchwad. “In Ulhasnagar, out of the 6,623 illegal structures, not even 100 have been cleared for regularisation. Structural stability is a must for regularising,” he said. The committee headed by Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) commissioner will comprise commissioners of civic bodies from the state, he said adding that he has sought statistical analysis of illegal structures in Pimpri-Chinchwad by June 30. Chavan lamented lack of a strong urban governance machinery in the state. He also said 11 districts in the state don't have a regional plan. He admitted that regularising illegal structures was a “moral hazard” and need of the hour was to find a middle path. Pimpri-Chinchwad has three planning authorities out of which 66,324 structures are in the municipal corporation limits, under the new township development authority there are about 16,000 structures while in MIDC area there are 1,300 structures which are illegal, he said. The Bombay High Court had earlier sent eviction notices to 66,324 structures. According to HC orders, the civic body had demolished some structures and cases were filed against those making illegal constructions, the CM said. Girish Bapat (BJP) demanded that the structures be regularised by levy of heavy penalty and also action be taken against the developers and authorities who allow illegal structures to come up. Vilas Lande (Independent) criticised Chavan's response saying that he had not said anything concrete to provide relief to the people. Speaker Dilip Walse Patil asked the Chief Minister to consider providing interim relief to the people in illegal structures and a time-bound programme be undertaken to prevent such structures from coming up. A special session of state Assembly can be convened for passing a new law on illegal structures, he said. Chavan said it was important to categorise the illegal structures and agreed to request the High Court for granting relief to genuine people.
Committee to prepare new law against illegal build
2014-06-12Committee to prepare new law against ... - Economi
Committee to prepare new law against illegal buildings: Prithviraj Chavan BY PTI | UPDATED: JUN 12, 2014, 04.03 PM IST MUMBAI: A 14-member committee headed by BMC commissioner has been entrusted with the task of preparing a new comprehensive law to stop illegal structures from proliferating in urban areas, Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan told the Legislative Assembly here today. "Ulhasnagar model of regularising illegal structures has not yielded any results and the same yardstick could not be applied to other cities as each one has different problems and issues," Chavan said while replying to a debate on illegal structures in Pimpri-Chinchwad. "In Ulhasnagar, out of the 6,623 illegal structures, not even 100 have been cleared for regularisation. Structural stability is a must for regularising," he said The committee headed by Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) commissioner will comprise commissioners of civic bodies from the state, he said adding that he has sought statistical analysis of illegal structures in Pimpri-Chinchwad by June 30. Chavan lamented lack of a strong urban governance machinery in the state. He also said 11 districts in the state don't have a regional plan. He admitted that regularising illegal structures was a "moral hazard" and need of the hour was to find a middle path. Pimpri-Chinchwad has three planning authorities out of which 66,324 structures are in the municipal corporation limits, under the new township development authority there are about 16,000 structures while in MIDC area there are 1,300 structures which are illegal, he said. The Bombay High Court had earlier sent eviction notices to 66,324 structures. According to HC orders, the civic body had demolished some structures and cases were filed against those making illegal constructions, the CM said. Girish Bapat (BJP) demanded that the structures be regularised by levy of heavy penalty and also action be taken against the developers and authorities who allow illegal structures to come up. Vilas Lande (Independent) criticised Chavan's response saying that he had not said anything concrete to provide relief to the people. Speaker Dilip Walse Patil asked the Chief Minister to consider providing interim relief to the people in illegal structures and a time-bound programme be undertaken to prevent such structures from coming up. A special session of state Assembly can be convened for passing a new law on illegal structures, he said. Chavan said it was important to categorise the illegal structures and agreed to request the High Court for granting relief to genuine people.
Committee to prepare new law against ... - Economi
2014-06-10Two-third solid waste in state disposed in unscien
Two-third solid waste in state disposed in unscientific manner: MPCB report Written by Anjali Lukose | Mumbai | Published:June 11, 2014 2:02 am Two thirds of the municipal solid waste generated in the state is disposed in an unscientific manner, found a report on the status of municipal solid waste management in Maharashtra. The Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) assessed the solid waste management practices of urban local bodies, which includes A, B and C class municipal councils as well, up to April 1. The report has found that out of the state’s 18,918 metric tonnes per day (MT/day) generation of municipal solid waste, only 6,286 MT/day is treated, setting the overall percentage of treatment of solid waste at 33 per cent. According to the report, none of the approximately 9,500 MT/day waste generated by Mumbai is treated, and it is simply dumped “in an unscientific manner” at the Mulund and Deonar dumping grounds. It is estimated that every resident in the metropolis now generates about 630 grams of waste daily, a figure that is expected to touch 1 kg in the coming years. Similarly, none of the waste generated from Thane, Kalyan-Dombivli and Ulhasnagar civic bodies is treated. Moreover, waste from these areas is dumped at unapproved sites, at Coastal Regulation Zone sites in some corporations. Besides bad odour and occupation of land, especially in space-starved cities like Mumbai, untreated waste has several health hazards, according to D T Deole, senior law officer of MPCB. The methane generated causes fire incidents at the dumping grounds, and there are times the ragpickers get burned or suffer cuts from acidic chemicals and sharp objects mixed with the wet waste dumped at these sites. Despite this, only seven local bodies in the state have submitted an action plan for setting up a solid waste treatment and processing plant to the MPCB until April. Mumbai, Mira-Bhayander and Ulhasnagar corporations have yet to submit any action plan. This, despite a revised deadline of 2015 being set up by the Bombay high court in 2013, said Deole.
2014-06-10Man asked to pay Rs1 lakh for child's admission; b
Man asked to pay Rs1 lakh for child's admission; beaten for recording conversation with principal ARVIND WALMIKI | Tue, 10 Jun 2014-06:40am , DNA A man, who sought admission for his four-year-old child at the Sacred Heart school in Kalyan, was brutally assaulted for recording a conversation with the principal who allegedly demanded a donation of Rs1 lakh. The man, Ghanshyam Bhagwan Talreja, has complained to the police, who have registered a case against unidentified persons for assault and criminal intimidation. The school is a reputed institution and the incident has agitated parents of children studying there. Talreja, 36, along with his wife first approached the school on June 2, seeking admission for his child in the Junior KG. The principal Fr Anthony Albin informed them about the fees structure and also told them they would have to pay a donation. Talreja says he begged the principal that he would not be able to pay such a large amount. But when he was told that he would have to seek admission somewhere else, he asked for some time to arrange the money. The following day, Talreja paid Rs25,000 to a school official and again asked for more time to pay the remaining amount. He continued to visit the school daily to confirm that he was keen about the admission and he says that he recorded all the exchanges with the school authorities on his mobile phone. Every time, he was driven out of the school office with a warning that he would have to pay an extra Rs2,000 interest on the balance amount for the delay. But on Saturday morning, as he stepped out of the office, some staff members got suspicious and followed after him. Talreja alleged that some way from the school, two persons riding a motorcycle stopped and assaulted him. "They abused me about making a recording and kicked and punched me," Talreja said. "They searched for my mobile phone, but when they could not find it they warned me not to come to the school and left." Some passersby helped him to get to a hospital where he was treated for a fracture on the hand. "The principal had also said he wanted to talk to my wife separately, but I told him he should say whatever he has to in my presence. I am a poor man and cannot arrange so much money in a short time," he said. S Rokhade, investigating officer at Ulhasnagar police station, said investigations were in progress and no arrests were made so far. They have taken the statement of the school authorities. The CCTV system was not functioning on the school premises as it is the vacation period.
2014-06-09Kalyan bizman says beaten for bribe sting on schoo
Kalyan businessman says beaten for bribe sting on school Pradeep Gupta | TNN | Jun 10, 2014, 12.58 AM IST KALYAN: Investigations have begun on a Ulhasnagar businessman's complaint that he was beaten up soon after leaving a local school, where he claimed he had recorded a bribe demand by an administrator. Ghanshyam Talreja (pic below), a 36-year-old real estate agent who stays in Goal Maidan area, met a clerk at the school for admission of his son to junior KG on June 2. He was initially fobbed off, but after several requests the clerk he could manage one seat if he paid Rs 1 lakh as "donation" over and above the fees, Talreja told the police. Talreja claims he paid Rs 25,000 to the clerk and met an administrator with a plea that the donation amount be reduced. He refused and an upset Talreja decided to teach them a lesson by exposing them. On Saturday morning, he again met the administrator and pleaded. Finally, he asked if he could pay by cheque. The administrator said all payments had to be in cash. Talreja recorded the conversation on his mobile phone and left. Barely had he gone a little distance, when two youths on a bike accosted him, he told the police. Accusing him of trying to malign their boss's image by conducting a sting operation on him, they beat him up and left. On the complaint of Talreja, who fractured his right hand, on Sunday night, the cops registered an FIR.Several attempts to contact the school proved futile. Investigating officer S L Rokde said when they went to the school on Monday, both persons mentioned by Talreja said they did not know him. Police say they will use the recorded conversation to further the probe.
2014-06-09Ex-corporator Mohan Raut's murder was planned for
Ex-corporator Mohan Raut’s murder was planned for earlier, put off: Police Mumbai | Published:June 10, 2014 4:20 am Investigations into the murder of Shiv Sena corporator Mohan Raut from Badlapur and interrogation of the arrested accused have indicated that the murder was slated to be executed almost a month before it actually occurred. It did not work out as planned. The mastermind, Yogesh Raut, then personally guided and observed the execution of the crime the second time. On May 23 two unidentified assailants had allegedly opened fire at Raut at around 11.30 am in Apte Wadi, Badlapur. The alleged assailants fired 12 bullets. Four bullets hit Raut in the chest and he succumbed to his injuries later in the day. The Thane Crime branch with the help of local Ulhasnagar crime branch unit arrested the two accused, identified as Chandrakant Mahskar (24) and Gangaram Linge (29), on May 29 from Bhiwandi and also recovered the motorbike used by them. “During their interrogation, the arrested suspect said that the murder was planned by Yogesh Raut a month before it actually occurred. However, it could not materialise as several party workers always accompanied Mohan,” said an investigating officer. The officer added Yogesh personally accompanied Mahskar and Linge to the scene, the second time, on the day of the murder. He had chalked out the plan himself and kept a close watch on Mohan’s movements on a daily basis, after which he learned that he spent some time by himself in his office in Apte Wadi every morning. “Mahskar and Linge are close associates of Yogesh Raut, who is the vice president of the NCP in Badlapur City. A total of seven people have been named as accused in the case,” the officer said. The police said that Yogesh was himself attacked on March 18 at Gandhi Chowk in Balapur. He was hit by a bullet in chest when three to four men opened fire at him as he was walking towards his car. The Badlapur police is still investigating the case, officers said.
2014-06-08Water crisis: Dams have lead to India's doom in re
Water crisis: Dams have led to India's doom in resolving water issue YOGESH PAWAR | Sun, 8 Jun 2014-07:27am , Mumbai , DNA Mumbai and its suburbs are thirsty, and villages around pay the price as the government plans to increase the height of dams instead of de-silting reservoirs to increase water supply. This would result in more displacement and another round of submergence, says Yogesh Pawar It's that time of year again — when the sun beats down mercilessly, the mercury rises and everybody looks skywards for signs of rain. This includes not just the cotton farmer in Maharashtra's Vidarbha region but also the average Mumbaikar, alarmed by reports on dipping levels in the six reservoirs that supply water to the megalopolis, consuming 3,500 million litres of water per day (MLD) at the turn of a tap. But shouldn't that be enough for the city's nearly 12 million people? It could be, but it isn't. "The problem is not need, but greed," says Parineeta Dandekar of the South Asia Network Dams Rivers and People. "At a time when cities like Singapore and Hong Kong use sea water to flush toilets, more than half of Mumbai still largely uses filtered, chlorinated drinking water to flush. And I'm not even talking about the losses due to pilferage and leakage." But correctives don't appear to be part of the agenda. Slaking urban India's ever-growing thirst has become a convenient excuse for politicians to press for building more and more dams or raising the height of existing ones, causing widespread displacement and destruction of forests. This, when there are low-cost alternatives available. And Mumbai is a good example of this. De-silting is one obvious option. 'Water in Mumbai: Is the Crisis Over?', a report by Dhaval Desai of the Observer Research Foundation, points out, "De-silting just one reservoir providing water to Mumbai, Tansa, will yield an extra 33 days of water." "This will not involve destroying forests or displacing people and destroying their way of life; nobody wants to do this," Desai says. In fact, such is the apathy to this alternative that authorities did not want de-silt reservoirs even when lowered levels due to the poor rain in 2009 made this possible at a lower cost. But why? Environmental activist Krishna Gholap throws up his head and laughs. "De-silting will not bring in as many benefits as floating tenders for new dams or raising heights of existing ones. Obviously, our bureaucrats and politicians frown on it." And Maharashtra Water Resources Minister Sunil Tatkare had this to say, "The amount of money it will cost us to de-silt dams and reservoirs will be enough to make a new one." No further elaboration was forthcoming. Paying the price The result of this reluctance to take the logical way out is that dams are raised to increase reservoir capacity so Mumbai and its suburbs get more water. And villagers are the victims. Like those who live in and around the banks of the dam on the Barvi river at Badlapur, 90km from Mumbai. With every centimetre added to the Barvi dam's height, they fear they move closer to displacement — yet again — from the land they had been rehabilitated on when the dam was first built. The river bed is being blasted to buttress the dam's walls. And come monsoon, fears Balkrishna S Bangar, homes and fields in his village Tondli will be submerged. The apprehension finds echo in Kachkoli, Mohaghar, Tale and Kolewakhel villages, home to the Agri, Kunbi and adivasi communities, with a population of around 8,000. Over 3,000 acres of prime forest land will probably get submerged, according to the project plan. Never mind the fact that under the tribal sub plan of the Planning Commission, this belt falls under the eco-sensitive zone of the Western Ghats. The villages and forest area are ensconced between undulating hills in Murbad taluka of Thane district on the banks of the catchment area of Barvi. Built at a cost of Rs3.5 crore in 1973, the dam, originally 38.10 metres high, displaced around 2,000 people from seven villages and submerged over 4,750 acres of dense forests. The villagers, among them Bangar, were offered equal amounts of land for what they lost. "We are being uprooted once again from the land we were given for rehabilitating us then,'' says the 65-year-old. The rhythmic whirr of machinery is discordant with the hypnotic drone of the dragonflies. But only just. It doesn't break the serene monotony of the silent mountain air in the valley. The history of the dam, inextricably linked with that of Tondli village, runs deeper than its deceptively calm waters let on. The village, originally situated exactly where the dam now stands, was shifted to its present location when the dam was built. What the Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC) omitted to tell the villagers was that they would be relocated plum in the middle of what would become the dam's catchment area! "We lost our homes and fields and were hoodwinked into moving by being offered an equal amount of land here," says Umesh Bhoir, sarpanch of Tondli village. Each of the project-affected families is to get a plot of around 0.5 acres of land at Murbad, off the MIDC industrial belt. Girija, an adivasi, scoffs, "How can we adivasis, who've lived for generations in forests, take to city life?" The non-tribals who own land live off it, while others work as farmhands on others' fields. But they are entirely dependent on forest produce, selling wild fruits, flowers and palash leaves. Displacement & rehab game How many times can a community be called upon to sacrifice for the greater common good? Once? Twice? Thrice? In the case of these villagers, this will be the fourth time: the height of the dam was raised from the original 38.10m to 44.7m in 1979, to 52m in 1985, 66.5m in 1999, and now is being raised to 72m this year. And who are they being asked to sacrifice for? Their urban counterparts, of course. Rapid population growth in Mumbai's suburbs has increased the demand for water so work on raising the height of the dam was started, says MIDC superintendent engineer Vijay Panikar. "The total storage capacity will be enhanced from 174 million cubic metres to 347 million cubic metres. All civic bodies like the Thane Municipal Corporation, Navi Mumbai, Kalyan-Dombivli, Ulhasnagar, Bhiwandi-Nizampura, and Mira-Bhayander have emerged as the fast-growing far suburbs of Mumbai. This augmentation will address the increasing water needs of 5.4 million people." Breaking the leopard corridor Local activists like Kishore Gholap also wonder why this project does not take into account the fact that this is a well-established corridor for three different leopard habitats. On one side are the Naneghat hills, on another is the densely forested Malshej and on the third is the jungle between Murbad and Kalyan. "If a big cat like the leopard finds enough prey-base here, then we are talking of a well developed ecosystem to sustain this food chain," he points out. "Successive height-rises have eaten more and more into this thickly forested habitat and soon the cats will not be able to cross over. This could lead to in-breeding, weakening of the gene pool, and ultimately wiping out of the leopards." Five months ago, a leopard killed a young tribal girl in Kolewakhel village. The irate Katlkari villagers gave chase when they heard the girl's screams and killed the leopard. Not only Barvi The narrative in Barvi — where silt accumulation reduces dam capacity, which is then followed by the debatable choice of raising the dam's height, causing another round of submergence of forests and displacement of villagers — is not an isolated one. This is a story that cruelly plays out along most water sources which are dipping to unusable levels. India can no longer draw water from 81 of its most important dams and reservoirs as levels have fallen to muddy lows. This is borne out by Central Water Commission data which shows that dams across India have never been de-silted, leading to a decrease in their water holding capacity. Mumbai's Upper Vaitarna reservoir's capacity has been reduced by 22%, the capacity of Maharashtra's biggest dam, the Koyna, has been reduced by 26.5% while the capacity of one of India's biggest dams and certainly its most silted, the Hirakud, has come down by 27.25%. Says British engineer Rodney White, author of Evacuation Of Sediments From Reservoirs: "About 1,500 cubic km could be lost before the middle of the century. Intensifying climate change could hasten this loss with an increase in the severity of storms which worsen erosion." According to him, deforestation is a major contributing factor. "The levels of erosion from hillsides planted with crops can be 150 times higher than from similar forested land." To build dams, forests are cut down. This leads to erosion and silting. As the capacity reduces and demand for water rises, either the height of the dam is raised or newer dams are planned, which means more deforestation and silting. This is a vicious cycle in emerging economies where urbanisation-led migration is making the problem chronic, he explains. A United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) report echoes concerns over water wastage in developing countries since 2001. "About 60% of the water used for irrigating crops is wasted or used inefficiently, and 50% or more of the water distributed in cities is lost to silting, leaks and poor management," says the report, which names India as the top water waster followed by Brazil and China. "Around 6,000 children die every day because of inadequate water and poor sanitation. The poorer you are, the more you have to pay for water," it adds.
Water crisis: Dams have lead to India
2014-06-08Water crisis: Dams have led to India's doom in res
Water crisis: Dams have led to India's doom in resolving water issue Sun, 8 Jun 2014-07:27am , Mumbai , DNA Mumbai and its suburbs are thirsty, and villages around pay the price as the government plans to increase the height of dams instead of de-silting reservoirs to increase water supply. This would result in more displacement and another round of submergence, says Yogesh Pawar It's that time of year again — when the sun beats down mercilessly, the mercury rises and everybody looks skywards for signs of rain. This includes not just the cotton farmer in Maharashtra's Vidarbha region but also the average Mumbaikar, alarmed by reports on dipping levels in the six reservoirs that supply water to the megalopolis, consuming 3,500 million litres of water per day (MLD) at the turn of a tap. But shouldn't that be enough for the city's nearly 12 million people? It could be, but it isn't. "The problem is not need, but greed," says Parineeta Dandekar of the South Asia Network Dams Rivers and People. "At a time when cities like Singapore and Hong Kong use sea water to flush toilets, more than half of Mumbai still largely uses filtered, chlorinated drinking water to flush. And I'm not even talking about the losses due to pilferage and leakage." But correctives don't appear to be part of the agenda. Slaking urban India's ever-growing thirst has become a convenient excuse for politicians to press for building more and more dams or raising the height of existing ones, causing widespread displacement and destruction of forests. This, when there are low-cost alternatives available. And Mumbai is a good example of this. De-silting is one obvious option. 'Water in Mumbai: Is the Crisis Over?', a report by Dhaval Desai of the Observer Research Foundation, points out, "De-silting just one reservoir providing water to Mumbai, Tansa, will yield an extra 33 days of water." "This will not involve destroying forests or displacing people and destroying their way of life; nobody wants to do this," Desai says. In fact, such is the apathy to this alternative that authorities did not want de-silt reservoirs even when lowered levels due to the poor rain in 2009 made this possible at a lower cost. But why? Environmental activist Krishna Gholap throws up his head and laughs. "De-silting will not bring in as many benefits as floating tenders for new dams or raising heights of existing ones. Obviously, our bureaucrats and politicians frown on it." And Maharashtra Water Resources Minister Sunil Tatkare had this to say, "The amount of money it will cost us to de-silt dams and reservoirs will be enough to make a new one." No further elaboration was forthcoming. Paying the price The result of this reluctance to take the logical way out is that dams are raised to increase reservoir capacity so Mumbai and its suburbs get more water. And villagers are the victims. Like those who live in and around the banks of the dam on the Barvi river at Badlapur, 90km from Mumbai. With every centimetre added to the Barvi dam's height, they fear they move closer to displacement — yet again — from the land they had been rehabilitated on when the dam was first built. The river bed is being blasted to buttress the dam's walls. And come monsoon, fears Balkrishna S Bangar, homes and fields in his village Tondli will be submerged. The apprehension finds echo in Kachkoli, Mohaghar, Tale and Kolewakhel villages, home to the Agri, Kunbi and adivasi communities, with a population of around 8,000. Over 3,000 acres of prime forest land will probably get submerged, according to the project plan. Never mind the fact that under the tribal sub plan of the Planning Commission, this belt falls under the eco-sensitive zone of the Western Ghats. The villages and forest area are ensconced between undulating hills in Murbad taluka of Thane district on the banks of the catchment area of Barvi. Built at a cost of Rs3.5 crore in 1973, the dam, originally 38.10 metres high, displaced around 2,000 people from seven villages and submerged over 4,750 acres of dense forests. The villagers, among them Bangar, were offered equal amounts of land for what they lost. "We are being uprooted once again from the land we were given for rehabilitating us then,'' says the 65-year-old. The rhythmic whirr of machinery is discordant with the hypnotic drone of the dragonflies. But only just. It doesn't break the serene monotony of the silent mountain air in the valley. The history of the dam, inextricably linked with that of Tondli village, runs deeper than its deceptively calm waters let on. The village, originally situated exactly where the dam now stands, was shifted to its present location when the dam was built. What the Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC) omitted to tell the villagers was that they would be relocated plum in the middle of what would become the dam's catchment area! "We lost our homes and fields and were hoodwinked into moving by being offered an equal amount of land here," says Umesh Bhoir, sarpanch of Tondli village. Each of the project-affected families is to get a plot of around 0.5 acres of land at Murbad, off the MIDC industrial belt. Girija, an adivasi, scoffs, "How can we adivasis, who've lived for generations in forests, take to city life?" The non-tribals who own land live off it, while others work as farmhands on others' fields. But they are entirely dependent on forest produce, selling wild fruits, flowers and palash leaves. Displacement & rehab game How many times can a community be called upon to sacrifice for the greater common good? Once? Twice? Thrice? In the case of these villagers, this will be the fourth time: the height of the dam was raised from the original 38.10m to 44.7m in 1979, to 52m in 1985, 66.5m in 1999, and now is being raised to 72m this year. And who are they being asked to sacrifice for? Their urban counterparts, of course. Rapid population growth in Mumbai's suburbs has increased the demand for water so work on raising the height of the dam was started, says MIDC superintendent engineer Vijay Panikar. "The total storage capacity will be enhanced from 174 million cubic metres to 347 million cubic metres. All civic bodies like the Thane Municipal Corporation, Navi Mumbai, Kalyan-Dombivli, Ulhasnagar, Bhiwandi-Nizampura, and Mira-Bhayander have emerged as the fast-growing far suburbs of Mumbai. This augmentation will address the increasing water needs of 5.4 million people." Breaking the leopard corridor Local activists like Kishore Gholap also wonder why this project does not take into account the fact that this is a well-established corridor for three different leopard habitats. On one side are the Naneghat hills, on another is the densely forested Malshej and on the third is the jungle between Murbad and Kalyan. "If a big cat like the leopard finds enough prey-base here, then we are talking of a well developed ecosystem to sustain this food chain," he points out. "Successive height-rises have eaten more and more into this thickly forested habitat and soon the cats will not be able to cross over. This could lead to in-breeding, weakening of the gene pool, and ultimately wiping out of the leopards." Five months ago, a leopard killed a young tribal girl in Kolewakhel village. The irate Katlkari villagers gave chase when they heard the girl's screams and killed the leopard. Not only Barvi The narrative in Barvi — where silt accumulation reduces dam capacity, which is then followed by the debatable choice of raising the dam's height, causing another round of submergence of forests and displacement of villagers — is not an isolated one. This is a story that cruelly plays out along most water sources which are dipping to unusable levels. India can no longer draw water from 81 of its most important dams and reservoirs as levels have fallen to muddy lows. This is borne out by Central Water Commission data which shows that dams across India have never been de-silted, leading to a decrease in their water holding capacity. Mumbai's Upper Vaitarna reservoir's capacity has been reduced by 22%, the capacity of Maharashtra's biggest dam, the Koyna, has been reduced by 26.5% while the capacity of one of India's biggest dams and certainly its most silted, the Hirakud, has come down by 27.25%. Says British engineer Rodney White, author of Evacuation Of Sediments From Reservoirs: "About 1,500 cubic km could be lost before the middle of the century. Intensifying climate change could hasten this loss with an increase in the severity of storms which worsen erosion." According to him, deforestation is a major contributing factor. "The levels of erosion from hillsides planted with crops can be 150 times higher than from similar forested land." To build dams, forests are cut down. This leads to erosion and silting. As the capacity reduces and demand for water rises, either the height of the dam is raised or newer dams are planned, which means more deforestation and silting. This is a vicious cycle in emerging economies where urbanisation-led migration is making the problem chronic, he explains. A United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) report echoes concerns over water wastage in developing countries since 2001. "About 60% of the water used for irrigating crops is wasted or used inefficiently, and 50% or more of the water distributed in cities is lost to silting, leaks and poor management," says the report, which names India as the top water waster followed by Brazil and China. "Around 6,000 children die every day because of inadequate water and poor sanitation. The poorer you are, the more you have to pay for water," it adds.
Water crisis: Dams have led to India
2014-06-07Track death numbers remain grim - Daily News & Ana
Track death numbers remain grim Sat, 7 Jun 2014-06:20am , DNA Statistics obtained under the Right to Information Act by on the number of people who have died or gotten injured on the suburban system between 2011 and 2013 paints a grim picture. Despite the crores of rupees spent by railways on upgrading infrastructure and the plethora of advertisements and posters at stations exhorting people not to tempt fate, the numbers, sought by social activist Chetan Kothari, have remained much the same. In some stretches, the numbers have stabilised, something which officials say is a heartening sign, a reminder that less people might be crossing tracks despite the obvious increase in crowds on that stretch. In other sections, however, the numbers have continued to increase leaving the railway authorities at their wits' ends. For example, the number of deaths between Ambernath and Ulhasnagar in 2011 was 12, which went up to 18 in 2012 and then jumped to 27 in 2013. Even the stretch between Ghatkopar and Vikhroli has shown itself to be a chronic problem spot. After the number of deaths dropped from 42 in 2011 to 32 in 2012, it again shot up to 51 in 2013. "What it means is that the low numbers in 2012 was just an aberration and people continue to cross tracks or exhibit dangerous commuting behaviour between the two stations," said a CR official. There is some glimmer of hope in certain places which were chronic black spots on the suburban map. The number of commuters dying in Matunga station area has come down from 41 in 2011 to 40 in 2012 and 36 in 2013. In Sion, the numbers have fallen from 46 in 2011 to 44 in 2012 to 31 in 2013. The Bandra to Vile Parle section is another plus point for railways. The number of people dying in suburban accidents has come down from 89 in 2011 to 60 in 2012 and 51 in 2013. Similar is the trend in the Sewri to Chembur stretch, where the numbers have progressively gone down from 83 in 2011 to 72 in 2012 and 69 in 2013. However, as far as officials are concerned, continuous drop in numbers over a period of four to five years is the only reliable sign that less people are living dangerously on the suburban network. Speaking to dna, Kothari said it was time the railways took up anti-trespassing and other safety measures on a war footing. "Their approach to building walls, fencing, foot overbridges and other such works is very slow and also insufficient," he added.
Track death numbers remain grim - Daily News & Ana
2014-06-04Calculator launched to reduce carbon footprint in
Calculator launched to reduce carbon footprint in city By: Express News Service | Mumbai | Published:June 5, 2014 3:40 am Mumbai-specific carbon footprint calculator, a first-of-its-kind, was launched by Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority’s Mumbai Metropolitan Region- Environment Improvement Society (MMR-EIS) on the eve of World Environment Day, celebrated world-wide on June 5. The calculator factors in the carbon footprint generated by travelling on local trains, autorickshaws, as well as electricity bills, based on the different service providers available only in Mumbai Metropolitan Region(MMR) that comprises municipal corporations of Greater Mumbai, Thane, Kalyan, Navi Mumbai and Ulhasnagar. “We wanted a localised resource kit for climate change that takes into account Mumbai’s micro-climate and includes information that people in MMR can use to reduce their carbon footprint. While there is ample information on climate change available, we wanted something more relevant for Mumbaikars, so we took up this project,” said Prasad Shetty, secretary of MMR-EIS. The calculator, conceived and developed by Environmental Management Centre LLP, was part of the Climate Change-related Resources and Tools (CCRT) kit launched on Wednesday, along with the website, at Maharashtra Nature Park in Dharavi. The calculation is done by seeking information through 10 rounds that determine ones use of vehicles, consumption of LPG or piped gas, travel time on various vehicles and other factors. The result gives an individual’s consumption, as compared to the value of the average Indian user and suggests how to reduce carbon footprint. The CCRT kit, accessible for free through the website http://www.mmr-ccrt.org.in consists fact sheets on climate change parameters and information related to MMR. It has been compiled from various authentic sources and studies conducted in the past decade, as well as booklets on the National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC) and the MMR. Besides this, the website also contains presentations, posters and youth resource guides dedicated to climate change. For children, the website also has a special calculator for carbon footprint and activity booklets. “Our resources will help in planning and changing people’s lifestyles. We are the only ones who have incorporated Mumbai-specific things like travel by local trains used by most people in the city. The content on our website is also available in Marathi,” said Shantanu Roy, senior vice-president of Environmental Management Centre LLP.
2014-06-03Police raid rest house in Thane, rescue dozen girl
Police raid rest house in Thane, rescue dozen girls Press Trust of India | Thane June 3, 2014 Last Updated at 23:02 IST Police today said they raided a rest house in Ulhasnagar here and rescued a dozen girls who were forced into flesh trade besides arresting seven people. A team of Thane Police's Social Security Branch raided the Nitya Rest House and rescued the girls last night, Inspector Madan Ballal of Crime Branch said. The police arrested the rest house's Manager, two customers and as many agents and staff members in connection with the illegal activities being carried out in the premises, he said, adding Rs 12,300 in cash was also recovered. According to the police, a secret cavity was detected in the rest house in which eight girls were kept hidden.
2014-06-02Man held for having unnatural sex with daughter -
Man held for having unnatural sex with daughterThe writer has posted comments on this articlePradeep GuptaPradeep Gupta,TNN | Jun 2, 2014, 06.26 PM ISTShare on Linkedin CommentsMoreGoogle BookmarksNewsvineLive BookmarksTechnoratiYahoo BookmarksBlogmarksDel.icio.usApnaCircleEmail this articleSave this articleMy Saved articlesPrint this articleAReduce font sizeAIncrease font sizecommentsShare MoreEmail this articleSave this articlePrint this articleAReduce font sizeAIncrease font sizeGoogle BookmarksNewsvineLive BookmarksTechnoratiYahoo BookmarksBlogmarksDel.icio.usApnaCircleMy Saved articlesRELATED ULHASNAGAR: A 23-year-old man was arrested on Monday for allegedly making unnatural sex with his three-year-old stepdaughter in Ulhasnagar. The incident took place on Sunday late night but case was lodge on Monday afternoon, after which police managed to arrest the accused. The accused identified as Santosh Lokhande. Hill Line police said on Sunday night, Lokhande asked her wife to bring Chinese food from a hotel situated in area, and after she went to shop, the accused allegedly made unnatural sex with victim forcefully. When victim's mother came back, she found her daughter crying. Later victim's mother threaten to file complaint but accused threatened to kill both. However on Monday morning, victim explained entire incident to her neighbour friend who then took both mother and daughter to police and made victim mother to file complaint. D R Dhopaokar, senior police Inspector of Hill Line police station, "After getting complaint we sent our team and managed to arrest the accused" . Police said accused work as labour in city and he was living with victim's mother as husband since last two years.
2014-06-02Police raid rest house, rescue 12 girls from prost
Police raid rest house, rescue 12 girls from prostitution in ThaneThe writer has posted comments on this articlePradeep GuptaPradeep Gupta,TNN | Jun 2, 2014, 11.20 PM ISTShare on Linkedin CommentsMoreGoogle BookmarksNewsvineLive BookmarksTechnoratiYahoo BookmarksBlogmarksDel.icio.usApnaCircleEmail this articleSave this articleMy Saved articlesPrint this articleAReduce font sizeAIncrease font sizecommentsShare MoreEmail this articleSave this articlePrint this articleAReduce font sizeAIncrease font sizeGoogle BookmarksNewsvineLive BookmarksTechnoratiYahoo BookmarksBlogmarksDel.icio.usApnaCircleMy Saved articlesREAD MORE prostitution ring|Police raid rest houseMadan Ballal, police inspector of SSB team said, "During the raid we discovered one concealed cavity in which 8 girls were kept."RELATEDULHASNAGAR: Thane SSB (Social Service Branch) officials team busted a prostitution ring by raiding Nitya rest house situated in Shantinagar area in Ulhasnagar on Monday night. SSB officials said 12 girls are rescued while a total 7 staff including manager Praveen Shetty, two customers and two agents are taken into police custody. Police also seized cash worth Rs 12,300 from the lodge. Madan Ballal, police inspector of SSB team said, "During the raid we discovered one concealed cavity in which 8 girls were kept." The lodge was run by manager Pravin Shetty. All the rescued girls and arrested seven accused have been handed over to Central police station.
Police raid rest house, rescue 12 girls from prost

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Nitin Lulla      [ 2012-02-01 ]
Jaise mumbai bahar se khubsoorat hai or Andar se utna hi ganda or worst hai, waise hi ulhasnagar b lookiwise acha hota ja raha hai but uski tarah andar se ganda or khatrnak b ho raha hai..
ajusudhir      [ 2012-01-24 ]
I LOVE ULHASNAGER
rajesh varma      [ 2011-12-30 ]
kindly control the street dog... in ulhasnagar 1
Lalu      [ 2011-12-25 ]
Please clear the illegal Parkig of 2 lines of Trucks Parked on both sides of road at Vithalwaadi Rly. station raod, near kajal Petrol Pump, Ulhasnagar-3.
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Ulhasnagar Sindhunagar City News, Events - June-2014
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