Mumbai Metro moves HC, for urgent hearing on Parsi community plea


Stating that the work on the Metro III project would soon reach the site of two Parsi fire temples, the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation has sought an urgent hearing on a plea filed by the Parsi community, against the alignment

The Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation (MMRC), on June 28, 2018, approached the Bombay High Court, seeking an urgent hearing on a plea filed by the Parsi community in the city, opposing the alignment of the Mumbai Metro III project. The MMRC told a bench of justices AS Oka and RI Chagla that its tunnelling and drilling work for the Colaba-Bandra-Seepz route, would reach up to the site of two of the Parsi fire temples in the city, in about 25 days from now.

The community has been opposing such tunnelling work, alleging that the same might cause severe damage to the temples. In May 2018, several members of the community and some high priests from two Parsi temples had approached a vacation bench of the HC, opposing the drilling work for two tunnels for the Metro III line. The petitioners told the HC that the MMRC was making two tunnels near Azad Maidan, as part of the work on the ColabaBandra-Seepz Metro III corridor.

See also: No feasibility to construct Metro 2B line underground: MMRDA to Bombay HC

As per the present plan of the MMRC, these tunnels will pass directly under two fire temples and Atash Behrams (sacred fires), one at the junction of Princess Street and another at Kalbadevi in south Mumbai, both heritage sites.

The petitioners said the proposed work, in its current form, will lead to desecration of the holy fires, threaten the structural safety of the temple buildings, both of which are heritage structures and that the wells at the temples might run dry, because of the tunnelling work. The MMRC, however, had denied that its work would cause any damage to the temples.

The bench led by justice Oka has now scheduled the hearing on the pleas for July 17, 2018. It also granted a week’s time to the MMRC, to file an affidavit clearing its stand on the issue.

 

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