The Bombay High Court in the matter of R city mall developers Pvt. Ltd versus the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai directed The Municipal Corporation of Mumbai (BMC) to grant a no objection certificate (NOC) to the mall to conduct an ice cream festival for three days.
The reasoning behind doing so the court was that the citizens visit malls not just for shopping but they also go there for leisure or amusement.
Justice GS Kulkarni and R N Laddha commented that there is nothing objectionable or irregular in utilizing open spaces in malls for organizing limited festivals for the enjoyment of visitors.
The court observed that citizens visit malls not only for shopping but also for leisure which they derive from activities other than shopping that is from visiting different areas created in malls like food areas, play areas, amusement or cinema etc.,
The R- city mall in Ghatkopar, Mumbai had approached the High Court against an order of the Municipal Corporation of Mumbai that refused to grant them a no-objection certificate to hold a temporary ice cream festival in the mall’s premises from April 28th to April 30 that is for three days
The BMC refused to give permission stating that such commercial activity is not permissible to be held in the open space of the mall.
On the other hand, our city mall argued that the activity is for a limited duration of just about three days and would only involve the installation of temporary stalls. It stated that these stalls would be installed by shops that already have permanent licenses at the mall.
The bench observed that regulation 27(1)(g)(ii) the development control regulations provide no restriction on any temporary commercial activity or recreational activities.
It is only an activity where the visitors of the mall would get to enjoy the benefit of a variety of edibles in a common open space which in our view is a permissible recreational activity within the meaning of regulation 27.
In light of the above observations, the Bombay High Court allowed the holding of a three-day ice cream festival in our city mall in Ghatkopar and directed the BMC to grant a no-objection certificate to the mall to conduct the festival.