PMC demolishes 56061 square feet of illegal structures in 24 hours

These establishments spread over 56061 sqft area were illegally set up by industrialists, local representatives, and their close associates.
PMC Building
PMC BuildingImage source: PMC

Pune: Unauthorized restaurants, bars, and rooftop hotels operating at 19 locations in Baner, Balewadi, and Koregaon Park were demolished by Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) on Wednesday (June 26).

Many of these establishments spread over 56,061 square feet area were set up by industrialists, local representatives, and their close associates without proper authorization.

Although these establishments were previously not subject to enforcement, the situation has changed following Chief Minister Eknath Shinde's directive to demolish illegal pubs and bars.

Despite local residents' complaints about these establishments selling alcohol openly until the early hours, they continued operations under the protection of police, the state excise department, and municipal officials.

The situation came to a head after a recent incident in Kalyani Nagar highlighted the close ties between restaurant and pub owners and the administration, sparking public outrage.

As a result, the administration was compelled to take action under public pressure. Certain establishments in Baner, Balewadi, Deccan Gymkhana, and Koregaon Park had evaded action. In some areas where structures were demolished, new sheds were erected almost immediately.

Notably, 'L3' pub on Fergusson College Road was found hosting parties until dawn, with videos showing drug use surfacing. This revelation, just ahead of the legislative session, heightened concerns for the state government, prompting the Chief Minister to order stringent actions.

Consequently, the PMC demolished 36,845 square feet of unauthorized structures at 29 locations on Tuesday, followed by actions at 19 locations on Wednesday.

Challenges in Enforcement:

"We are aware of unauthorized pubs, bars, restaurants, and rooftop hotels operating in Pune. Whenever we attempt enforcement, influential leaders intervene and pressure us to halt the actions. This has often left us unable to complete the demolitions or only partially executing them. Despite knowing the facts, our hands are tied. However, incidents like the recent one give us the opportunity to carry out these operations," stated a civic official.

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