The owners have complained that the Vasai-Diva line has stopped access to saltpan, thus denying many of their livelihood.
Mumbai: The Bombay high court has directed the railway authorities to resolve the issue of saltpans at Vasai whose owners have complained that thousands of persons involved in these saltpans have lost their livelihood as access to them has been restricted by the Vasai-Diva line.
The court has directed the railway authorities to consider the application of these saltpan owners seeking fixing of two hours every day for removal of salt produced and stored in the pans within three weeks.
A division bench of Justice Shantanu Khemkar and Justice Makarand Karnik was hearing a contempt petition filed by the saltpan owners against central railway (CR) and other government authorities for not complying with the undertaking they had given in 2005 to provide proper amenities for saltpans whose land was acquired to lay the Vasai-Diva double line.
According to advocate Yogita Deshmukh Chitnis who appeared for the petitioners, it was becoming increasingly difficult for saltpan owners to transport the salt they had produced as railway authorities were not allowing the entry of trucks. As a result, the owners were finding it difficult to sustain themselves as well as those employed in the pans. The petitioners sought directions to the railway to allow them some time on a daily basis to transport the salt.
Meanwhile, the counsel for the railway said that as express trains were using the tracks, it was difficult to give an undertaking about the permissible time slot and sought two months’ time to come up with a solution. However, the court shot down the railway’s request and directed the railway to give the petitioners a hearing and resolve their complaints within three weeks.