A series of controlled explosions reduced the 100-metre tall Supertech twin towers to a mountain of rubble, watched by thousands from surrounding rooftops and lakhs on live television, nine years after a residents association took the illegally built Supertech twin towers to court.
As per media sources, the Noida Authority has now turned its attention to the 100 or so similar buildings in the neighbourhood to see if they, too, were built in violation of the law in the aftermath of the twin tower demolition. The majority of these structures were approved between 2009 and 2014, around the same time as the twin towers.
Kirit Somaiya, a Bharatiya Janata Party leader, asked Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde on Monday to conduct a special audit of illegal high-rise buildings in Mumbai to protect the interests of flat owners.
Somaiya stated in a letter to the CM, “Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) corruption has resulted in the construction of high-rise residential towers in Mumbai. In light of the Supreme Court’s decision to demolish the Noida twin towers, a special audit of such illegal towers in Mumbai should be conducted. Such structures either do not have an Occupancy Certificate from the civic body or have only a partial OC. People who have purchased apartments in these buildings are concerned about such practises.”
On Sunday, the illegally constructed Supertech twin towers in Noida were demolished. The nearest residential complex was only nine metres away, and residents had complained that the illegal towers were blocking their view.
The Supreme Court ordered the demolition a year ago, citing “collusion” between the builders and Noida Authority officials who allowed Supertech Ltd to build in an area where no buildings were supposed to be built under the original plans.
The demolition, cost around Rs 20 crore. The company’s overall loss is estimated to be around Rs 500 crore. This includes the costs of land, construction, and interest. A team from Edifice Engineering and South Africa’s Jet Demolitions, as well as the Central Building Research Institute (CBRI) and the Noida Authority, began a structural audit of the adjoining buildings. To help contain the dust, water sprinklers and anti-smog guns were activated at the site shortly after the demolition.
Only once before have high-rise buildings in India been demolished using controlled explosions. Four 18 to 20-story buildings in Kochi’s Maradu municipality were demolished in 2020 for violating Coastal Regulation Zone norms. Edifice and Jet Demolitions had also worked together back then. In November 2019, Jet also brought down the 108-meter-tall Bank of Lisbon building in Johannesburg, South Africa.