Can’t allot plot for Sunni burial land, BMC tells HC

Mumbai: The Brihnamumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) informed the Bombay High Court on Tuesday that it cannot file an undertaking that a plot will be provided for a burial ground for Sunni Muslims.

A Division Bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice G.S. Kulkarni was hearing a public interest litigation filed by Mohammed Furqan Mohammed Ali Qureshi, a real estate developer from Bandra, who has complained that no land is available for burial grounds for Sunni Muslims in the H/West Ward.

Senior counsel Anil Sakhare, appearing for the BMC, said the civic body cannot file an undertaking that a plot will be given for a burial ground, but that as a planning authority the corporation will reserve land for the purpose in the proposed development plan and file an affidavit accordingly.

The court then directed the Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority to be made party in the PIL.

Earlier, the BMC had submitted an affidavit indicating that in H/West Ward, the existing kabrastans meant for different sub-Muslim communities run by private trusts were available, and have nothing to do with the civic body.

However, the court had said that this would not suffice to satisfy the obligation of the municipal corporation to provide burial ground for each and every community which comes within their jurisdiction. The High Court had then directed the BMC to make a commitment by way of an undertaking and not just a proposal.

In another matter, another Division Bench of the court had noted that there was an acute shortage of burial places for Muslims and Christians in the city. It had directed the State government to frame a proper policy and, if possible, provide adequate space to people so that they can bury their dead.

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Printable version | Dec 6, 2020 6:51:40 AM |

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