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Business News/ News / India/  Mumbai hoarding owner Bhavesh Bhinde is a rape accused: ‘23 criminal cases…’
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Mumbai hoarding owner Bhavesh Bhinde is a rape accused: ‘23 criminal cases…’

Bhavesh Bhinde is the director of Ego Media Pvt Ltd - the advertising agency responsible for erecting the hoarding in Ghatkopar

Mumbai news: Ongoing rescue operation held by Mumbai Fire Brigade, NDRF, Mumbai Police and BMC at site after billboard fall on petrol pump following wind and dust strom at Ghatkopar. (Hindustan Times)Premium
Mumbai news: Ongoing rescue operation held by Mumbai Fire Brigade, NDRF, Mumbai Police and BMC at site after billboard fall on petrol pump following wind and dust strom at Ghatkopar. (Hindustan Times)

At least 14 people were killed, and scores of others were injured after a billboard collapsed in an unexpected dust storm in Mumbai's Ghatkopar on Monday. 

The "illegal" hoarding belonged to Ego Media Pvt Ltd – an advertising agency owned by Bhavesh Bhinde.

Police has registered a case against Bhavesh Bhinde and others for culpable homicide not amounting to murder and other relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code at Pant Nagar police station.

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has also issued a notice to Ego Media Pvt Ltd, demanding the removal of eight other hoardings in the region within 10 days. The municipal body has also threatened to cancel licenses for any hoardings in the 24 civic wards.

Who is Bhavesh Bhinde

Hindustan Times reported on Wednesday that in January this year, Bhavesh Bhinde faced accusations of rape, resulting in a case being lodged against him at the Mulund Police Station. Furthermore, a chargesheet has been submitted.

According to NDTV, Bhavesh Bhinde, has obtained multiple contracts from the Indian Railways and the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) for installing billboards and banners over the years. 

However, there have been allegations that he has violated regulations set by both entities on several occasions. Bhavesh Bhinde and other associates in his company are reportedly involved in cases related to tree poisoning and tree cutting.

In 2009, Bhavesh Bhinde, as reported by India Today, unsuccessfully ran as an Independent candidate in the Maharashtra legislative assembly election from Mulund. According to an affidavit filed by Bhinde during his candidature, he disclosed a total of 23 criminal cases against him.

Also Read:  Mumbaikars, show your inked finger for a treat! Restaurants offer discounts to voters on May 20, 21

India Today quoting sources added that Bhinde previously operated a company named Guju Ads, which was subsequently blacklisted by the BMC due to multiple legal issues involving him and the firm. Despite this blacklisting, Bhinde went on to establish Ego Media Pvt Ltd and continued to secure contracts for billboards and hoardings.

Notably, the billboard that collapsed on Monday had previously received recognition in the “Limca Book of Records" for being the "Largest Hoarding".

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Eknath Shinde has ordered a structural audit of all hoardings in the city. "The hoardings, if found illegal and dangerous, would be removed immediately," he said. 

"It is a very unfortunate incident. The government will probe it, and the people responsible will face action. I have also asked the BMC commissioner to conduct a structural audit of all the hoardings in the city. Those found illegal and dangerous will be removed," Shinde told reporters. 

Also Read:  Mumbai Police issue traffic guidelines ahead of PM Modi's roadshow in Ghatkopar

Mumbai thunderstorm

At least 14 people died and dozens were injured after a huge billboard fell on them during a thunderstorm in Mumbai.

The billboard collapsed on some houses and a petrol station following gusty winds and rain late on Monday.

Scores were trapped following the incident with rescue operations continuing till Wednesday, extending for 40 hours.

Mumbai's municipal corporation said at least 74 people were taken to different hospitals with injuries following the accident and 31 have been discharged.

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Published: 14 May 2024, 10:05 AM IST
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