2012 - 2013
Erstwhile constituents of NAGAR now amalgamated:
Clean Air (CA); CitiSpace (CS); Clean Sweep Forum (CSF)
Part of Expert Committee constituted by a G.R. under Chairmanship of the Municipal Commissioner
As a member of the Government’s Environment Mission under the stewardship of Secretary Environment, Mrs. Valsa Nair Singh CS had been advocating that a new policy be framed regarding Open Spaces covering all Government agencies in Mumbai. This was presented by Ms. Nair Singh to the Chief Minister Shri Prithviraj Chavan. Subsequently the Government of Maharashtra issued a GR to formulate a ‘Uniform Policy for Comprehensive Planning & Development of the Open Spaces within limits of the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai’, binding on all Authorities which have Open Spaces in their jurisdiction, under the Chairmanship of the Municipal Commissioner. CS was invited on to the Committee as an expert NGO.
Caretaker Policy for Public Open Spaces
Sports Policy for Open Spaces
- CS drafted a response to the issues put forward by the MCGM and met the Additional Municipal Commissioner Mr. Aseem Gupta in this connection. At this meeting, in which Mr. D.M. Sukthankar was also present, it was decided that CS would draft recommendations for changes required in the Development Control Rules (DCRs) of Greater Mumbai to protect misuse of Reserved Public Open Spaces. This was done and duly sent.
- CS also met Mr. S.J. Kunte, the Municipal Commissioner to discuss CS’s position regarding Policies governing RG, PG, Parks & Gardens and asked about the proposed New Open Space Policy being drafted by the MCGM
Regarding the Government of Maharashtra’s Sports Policy for Open Spaces
CS decided to be vigilant about any developments with regards to this and kept its members informed.
Survey of public open spaces
CS began its second phase of open space surveys. As earlier, each plot has been personally investigated by student architect teams trained by CS. Several of Mumbai’s colleges have participated in this study, some of which are: Sir J.J. College of Architecture, Garodia School of Professional Studies, Rizvi College of Architecture, Bharatiya Vidyapeeth College of Architecture and Anjuman-i-Islam’s Kalsekar Technical Campus.
Workshops for members and concerned citizens
Hawking / Non-Hawking
- CS’s Exhibition ‘Breathing Space’
CS and Tribe@Turf- An RWITC Community Initiative organised ‘Breathing Space’ – An Exhibition on Mumbai’s Reserved Public Open Spaces at the Member’s Pavilion Lawns, RWITC, Mahalaxmi race Course, Mumbai on Saturday, 14th & Sunday 15th, April 2012 – 11am To 7pm. The exhibition had 26 4ft x 8ft panels explaining issues related to Open Spaces, wherein, live examples of citizens’ struggles in each ward were showcased to highlight over 25 detrimental issues that Reserved Open Spaces in Mumbai face. The exhibition was well attended and covered by the media, thereby creating awareness on these issues with the citizens at large.
- CS and its members discussed and deliberated with the Urban Design Research Institute
The special emphasis was on the specific ideas on the role of Public Open Spaces that could be incorporated into the Development Plan (2014 – 2034) for Greater Mumbai, which is being revised. CS’s experience on the ground since 1998 proved valuable to these discussions.
- Talk with the students of K C Law College, Mumbai on 27th Sept, 2012
This was as a part of their curriculum for the course on Civic Awareness, Rights and Responsibilities of Citizens. This course was conducted under the aegis of K C Law College in collaboration with Nariman Point Churchgate Citizen’s Association (NPCCA) and Global Vision India Foundation. It has been a pioneering educational effort. It included students from Government Law College and Siddharth Law College.
- The Hawker matter continued in the Supreme Court with various interventions and the State filing affidavits. CS as always was in the forefront to ensure that the right thing was done for Mumbai.
- In December 2011, as per an Order of the Supreme Court, the State of Maharashtra was directed to file an affidavit of the competent authority and inform the Court the status of the Bill submitted to the President of India for assent to the amendments sought in the BMC and Police Acts. The State filed its affidavit eight months later on 18.8.2012. In view of this affidavit the Court adjourned the matter for 3 months – i.e.to be heard in January 2013. At this hearing the Court will also consider the issue of ”the desirability of lifting the embargo imposed on the entertaining of the miscellaneous petitions by the Bombay High Court.”
- CS wrote to Shri. Dilip Shrirao, Joint Commissioner (Vigilance) Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on 8th Sept, 2011, regarding their plans to tighten the FDA norms to ensure the availability of hygienic food in Greater Mumbai. We informed the FDA about the 2003 Supreme Court Order in the Hawker Matter which banned Cooking on the streets of Greater Mumbai.
- On the same matter CS wrote to Mr. S. G. Kunte, Municipal Commissioner on 12.11.2012 following news items regarding plans to train street food vendors in and around 55 khau gallis in Greater Mumbai on maintaining hygiene and safety standards in the food they serve. Plans put together by the MCGM and the FDA, in consultation with Mr. J.K. Banthia, Chief Secretary, Maharashtra.
The SRA case (Case No. 1152 of 2002) in the Bombay High Court survived with the interim order in favour of CS’s petition. As per the Orders (2002 & 2003) proposals were brought to the court as Notice of Motions (NoM)
. These were then scrutinized by CS as the petitioner and its view presented to court. The court heard both parties and gave its order. CS suggested that, in cases, where the plots were large and only partly encroached, allow the Scheme to give the complete acreage of the Reservation back to the MCGM while constructing the SRA buildings. 28 SRA proposals were scrutinized after which CS gave its recommendations to the High Court. The recommendations were made after a thorough examination of the DP with respect to the proposed SRA layout and a site inspection by CS’s architects as well as a satellite overlay.
Agencification of Solid Waste Management
CSF commissioned a research study to IIT-Bombay. IIT-B submitted their draft report on this study to which suggestions were sent by CSF and its partners to strengthen the case for ‘Agencification’ of Solid Waste Management.