The evolution of the creek area is made difficult by the large number of unpermitted shacks in the Kalwa Creek region.
In light of this, steps were taken on Thursday, August 24, in response to Thane Municipal Corporation (TMC) commissioner Abhijit Bangar’s directive, on the unpermitted hut located on the Kalwa Creek. Action had been taken against the slums that were illegally built in the bay and were located on the river bank of Kranti Nagar in Kalwa.
Additionally, given how quickly the streamside is falling apart, it has the potential that this location can suffer significant harm in the future. 65 to 70 of the cottages in the previously mentioned location were destroyed on Thursday. In this operation, newly built cottages along the creek were also removed. JCB Poclain assisted in the aforementioned action.
This action was taken by the encroachment, water supply, and power departments, the TMC deputy commissioner Sankar Patole, Thane zone-1 deputy commissioner Ganesh Gawde, assistant commissioner of the Naupada Kopri ward committee Sopan Bhaik, and the police. According to Bangar, “the fight against illegal encroachments and structures in the TMC region will resume”.
These homes in the Kranti Nagar slums, which were built by removing mangroves, were situated right next to the creek and would result in fatalities during monsoon floods. Following Monday’s operation, 0.50 acres of the land were set free, according to the authorities, and will be used to replace the mangroves that these illegal colonies had damaged.
There are 500–600 huts in nearby regions of the creek, among which those completely in the creek have been destroyed. To determine how many huts are present in the buffer zones surrounding the mangroves, an analysis of other huts would be conducted. The majority of locals plant bamboo along the creek bed and construct a temporary shelter from wood and plastic sheeting. Then, this is changed into a pucca house. These could be harmed in a high-tidal situation, which could result in deaths.
According to Shankar Patole, TMC’s deputy municipal commissioner, “We have destroyed 57 homes that were located right on the creek’s bank. The majority of people use bamboo”. He continued by saying that “there had been a lot of complaints recently about these developments.” Additionally, the divisional commissioner for Konkan had provided instructions for demolishing these huts.”
The Thane Tehsildar, Yuwraj Bangar, stated, “These huts were unlawful on the mangrove property, thus we did not need to issue them with any notice. The replanting of mangroves on this land will be done.”
“The officials came in the morning and started demolishing our homes. We were not given any prior notice. They did not give us time to even remove our things. They merely threw them out. I have been staying here for more than two decades. My children were born and married in the same lane. My grandson stays with me. He was home from school in the afternoon, but I could not cook him any food and had to request someone to feed him. I don’t know where we will be staying tonight or in the future”, a girl whose house was demolished reported.
There are 26 km of Thane Creek and 26 km2 of mangroves. Many creek fronts in the city are being built upon by slums or land sharks, particularly in Kalwa and Mumbra.
The district and forest authorities would need to approve the planting of the mangroves before the leftovers would be cleaned away, according to
the civic officials.