The Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC) has demolished illegal structures in 24 houses, including two flats owned by actress and Rajya Sabha member Jaya Bachchan, during an anti-encroachment drive.
The drive was carried out Thursday on the directives of the Lokayukta, who investigates corruption cases against ministers and government officials. He did so after the Madhya Pradesh High Court upheld a lower court’s decision to demolish the illegal structures constructed by residents at the upscale Ansal Apartments in Shamla Hill.
Jaya Bachchan’s mother reportedly lives in one of these flats.
Owners of the 24 ground floor flats had constructed a boundary wall and a shed on land meant as common open space. People residing on the upper floors protested the construction and requested the BMC to raze the illegal structures.
About four years back, J.L. Ajmani, a former IAS officer living on the upper floor, complained to the divisional commissioner that the common open space was being encroached upon. He added that they were left with no space for parking vehicles and for children to play.
The BMC issued a notice in January 2003 to remove the illegal structures but the owners, including Jaya Bachchan, took the matter to the district court in June 2005. The court closed the case September that year without giving them any relief.
They then filed a petition with the high court, which turned down their plea in May 2006. The BMC served notices in August to the house owners to get the structures demolished but to no avail.
Another upper floor resident complained to the Lokayukta that no action had been taken by the BMC despite high court orders. A BMC team Thursday finally demolished the structures after being reprimanded by the Lokayukta.