The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation will investigate more than 100 officers and engineers for allegedly allowing illegal modifications in bars, pubs and restaurants in their jurisdictions, The Times of India reported on Monday.
Municipal Commissioner Ajoy Mehta will conduct the inquiry. “We will put a system in place to fix accountability of each officer,” Mehta said. “We will also probe the roles of officers and engineers who are working at ward-levels in the same capacity for years and allowed errant structures to flourish.”
The municipal corporation on Sunday sealed 30 restaurants in the city’s 24 wards, a day after demolishing illegal structures at 314 eateries and sealing seven of them. It carried out the demolition drive after 14 people died in a massive fire on Friday at restaurants in Kamala Mills in Lower Parel.
The civic body inspected 615 hotels and restaurants and took action against 355 of them, The Hindu reported.
Among the restaurants sealed, 22 were in L Ward, which covers the areas of Asalpha, Sakinaka and Kurla. The BMC found violations at the Otters Club in Bandra West and Khar Gymkhana. It also sealed Acres Club in Chembur and continues to tear down extensions at gaming arcade Smaaash in Kamala Mills in Lower Parel.
Restaurateurs said the civic body took action without any notice. Most of them claimed they had renovated their eateries in the past eight months with the necessary permissions.
However, Assistant Municipal Commissioner (R-North) Sandhya Nandedkar told The Hindu that they acted only after informing establishments to not use their rooftops for commercial purposes. “There was no need to give special notices to all, as it was clearly mentioned after the Kamala Mills fire that restaurants have to close their rooftops,” he added.
On Sunday, the Mumbai Police arrested two men and booked one person for allegedly protecting the accused owners of the restaurant where a fire is believed to have started. The three are relatives of the owners of 1Above restaurant.