The Bombay High Court on Tuesday impleaded Shiv Sena’s Rajya Sabha Member of Parliament Sanjay Raut and the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) Ward Officer to be a respondent in the plea filed by actor Kangana Ranaut against the demolition of her office at Bandra.
Senior advocate Aspi Chenoy representing the BMC sought time to file a reply to the rejoinder filed by Ms. Ranaut on Monday, after the BMC replied to the amendments in the plea filed by her seeking ₹2 crore from the civic body.
Senior advocate Birendra Saraf appearing for the actor submitted a DVD to the court that contained statements by Mr. Raut. To which the court said, “If you are going to rely on the DVD, then he [Mr. Raut] needs to be added as a party.”
The Bench said it wanted both the advocates to address the circular issued by the BMC in 2012 on unauthorised construction. The court also directed Mr. Chinoy to keep the Executive Officers of the BMC present online for the proceedings.
Advocate Saraf said he would argue on the malice of law. The court impleaded Mr. Raut and Bhagyawant Late, Designated Officer, H West Ward, to be added as a party in the case and posted the matter to be heard on Wednesday.
Mr. Raut tweeted: “Case by an actress in Hon.High Court is about demolition of illegal structure by BMC which is an independent body & Demand is 2 make RS MP SanjayRaut a party! From Babri case 2 standing for Marathi pride,I have faced several cases! This wouldn’t deter me from fighting for d pride of my city & my Maharashtra”.
Ms. Ranaut has alleged bias against her. She said the designer Manish Malhotra, who lives in an adjacent bungalow, was given seven days notice under Section 351 (proceedings to be taken in respect of buildings or work commenced contrary to when work may be commenced) of the Mumbai Municipal Corporation Act, whereas her notice was issued under Section 354A (power of designated officer to stop erection of building or work commenced or carried on unlawfully).
The 15-page rejoinder read, “I deny that the record established that the Petitioner [Ms. Ranaut] has unlawfully [made] substantial alterations and additions to the property, contrary to the sanctioned building plan. I deny that alleged illegal work as alleged or at all was being carried on.”