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BMC razes 100-yr-old Cross in Bandra, Upset residents demand official's arrest

Sunday April 30, 2017 11:19 PM, Agencies

Bandra Cross

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Saturday razed a Cross said to be located since last 100 years in Bandra following the Bombay High Court's order to demolish illegal shrines or religious structures within its jurisdiction.

The agitated Catholic community demanded in a letter to the Commissioner of Police, the arrest of Assistant Municipal Commissioner Sharad Ughade.

In Bandra West, the BMC had identified 38 such structures, including 32 temples and 6 crosses.

Local residents and members of various Catholic organisations opposed the demolition and called the demolition blasphemous, while dismissing claims of it being illegally constructed.

They also alleged that the official had given a bizarre reason for demolishing the religious structure.

“The religious structure is constructed on a private property. The owner of the property had replied to the notice issued by the BMC with documentary evidence including Revenue Plan/Property Card. Despite this, the ward officials demolished the structure", Godfrey Pimenta of Watchdog Foundation, said.

According to Pimenta, Ugadhe said since they had demolished one Temple, they would need to demolish a Cross as a balancing act.

“How can a responsible Public Servant make such an irresponsible statement? This statement by Ugade has been knowingly made by him and has caused injury to the members of the Christian Community,” Pimenta added.

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