Sonu Sood illegally turned residential building into hotel: BMC

MUMBAI, Jan 7: The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has lodged a police complaint against Bollywood actor Sonu Sood, alleging that he has converted a residential building in Juhu into a hotel without permission, a police official said on Thursday.

Sood, however, denied any irregularities.

The K-West ward of the BMC filed the complaint at Juhu Police Station on Monday, the official said.

BMC’s junior engineer from K-West ward Mandar Wakankar filed the written complaint against Sood and his wife Sonali for alleged unauthorised addition/alteration and unauthorised change of user from residential to residential hotel building without taking sanction from the authorities.

Vishwas Mote, assistant municipal commissioner of K- West ward, said the complaint was filed for alleged violation of the provisions of the Maharashtra Regional and Town Planning (MRTP) Act.

However, in a statement issued on Thursday, Sood said that had “taken approval” for the change of user (of the land) from the civic body.

He also said that he would appeal against the BMC’s complaint against him in the Bombay High Court.

In the two-page complaint letter, the BMC alleged that the actor did not take any permission from the authorities before carrying out the structural changes in Shakti Sagar, a residential building in Juhu’s A B Nair Road.

“It was found that accused Mr Sonu Sood and Mrs Sonali Sonu Sood have instituted/commenced/undertaken/carried out development or changed the user of land as detailed below: Unauthorised addition/alteration beyond approved plans and unauthorised change of user from residential to residential hotel building without taking technical sanction from competent authority,” the BMC said in its complaint.

As per the complaint, the BMC had issued a notice to Sood in October last year in this connection.

“The land was one again inspected on Monday and it was found that the accused had not complied with the requisitions and was continuing to carry out unauthorised development even after the notice was served to him,” the BMC said in the complaint.

Sood, in his statement, said, “I have already taken approval for change of user from BMC. It was subject to approval of Maharashtra Coastal Zone Management Authority (MCZMA). This permission has not come due to COVID-19. There are no irregularities.”

“I always abide by the law. This hotel was used to house COVID-19 warriors during the pandemic. If permissions don’t come, I will restore it back to a residential structure. I am appealing against BMC’s complaint in the Bombay High Court,” the actor said.

Sources in the Juhu police station said that no FIR has been registered against the actor so far.

“We are waiting for the BMC officials to tell us in detail about the unauthorised structural changes so that we can take further steps,” the police official said.

Sood, who has featured in several films, including “Dabangg”, “Jodha Akbar”, and “Simmba’, earned praise last year for helping migrants reach their homes during the initial phase of the coronavirus-triggered lockdown. (PTI)