Unauthorised Constructions Within 100 meter near AFS Pune Spark Security Concerns, Prompt Joint Survey

Unauthorised Constructions Within 100 meter near AFS Pune Spark Security Concerns, Prompt Joint Survey

Unauthorised Constructions Within 100 meter near AFS Pune Spark Security Concerns, Prompt Joint Survey

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AFS Pune and PMC join forces to combat unauthorised constructions.

29 May 2024

By Payoshi Bisht

In response to mounting concerns over unauthorised constructions in the vicinity of Air Force Station (AFS) Pune, officials from both the AFS and Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) are gearing up to conduct a comprehensive survey within a 100-metre radius of the station. The move comes amidst heightened security sensitivities, with AFS Pune being a crucial hub for housing squadrons of Sukhoi 30 MKI fighter aircraft.

Hundreds of properties, including multi-storey buildings, have sprung up in the Lohegaon and Dhanori areas surrounding AFS Pune, raising eyebrows over potential security breaches. “IAF has earmarked it as a no-drone zone for security purposes,” revealed an IAF officer, emphasising the need for stringent measures to safeguard the station’s periphery.

The impending survey, however, faces bureaucratic hurdles as it requires special permission from the Air Headquarters due to its proximity to the station boundary. “We will conduct a joint survey with the IAF,” affirmed Pune Municipal Corporation executive engineer Rohidas Gavhane, detailing the collaborative effort between PMC and the Defence Estates Office (DEO) of the Pune zone.

Highlighting the urgency of the situation, a senior IAF officer criticised PMC’s laxity in permitting construction activities near restricted zones. “Despite knowing that it is a restricted zone, PMC has permitted private players to construct housing societies,” lamented the officer, pointing out the precarious proximity of some buildings to the bomb dumping ground of the Air Force station in Lohegaon.

PMC’s proposal to utilise drones for the survey has added another layer of complexity, requiring explicit permission from the Air Headquarters and South Western Air Command. To streamline the process, Bimal Kumar Dubey, deputy general manager of the Ammunition Factory Khadki, has been appointed to coordinate with PMC and Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation for the survey.