District Collector Archana Patnaik has directed officials of the Coimbatore Local Planning Authority (LPA) to demolish the second and third floors of Vigneshwar Cresta, a commercial building on Avanashi Road where a fire on April 25 this year killed four women.
The decision was taken following an order by the Madras High Court, while disposing of two writ petitions and one revision petition by the building owner challenging the notice and actions of the LPA. After the fire, the district administration began demolition of the building, especially the second and third floors that were constructed without building plan approval. The demolition was suspended after the building owner moved the court.
While the court said that it would not interfere in the demolition of the second and third floor that were constructed without permission, it, however, gave the petitioner two weeks time to file an appeal with the second respondent (Member Secretary of Coimbatore Local Planning Authority) with regard to the ground and first floor “which have been put up in consonance with the building plan”. The petitioner had contended that the orders of the administration dated May 23, 2013, for demolishing the building were against the principles of natural justice, as the order was passed even before the expiry of the notice period i.e., May 24, 2013, without giving the petitioner a chance to present his case.
With regard to other buildings that were sealed after the fire at Vigneshwar Cresta, the seal was removed for some buildings.