In a cramped city landscape sketched by shady land dealings, these 25 Maharashtra Housing & Area Development Authority’s plots make for unchartered territory. The Mhada plots spread across the city, with a collective area of approximately 27.5 acres, have been of no realistic use for the last two decades.
They were allotted, since the year 1992 onward, to various entities -- or as sources put it, people proximal to power corridors -- by a cabinet sub-committee vested by the power to confer plots under section 16 of the Mhada Act. But to date, the plots do not have lease agreements, something that must immediately and obligatorily follows land allotments.
Murkier still is the fact that the housing authority or the state has no record of how this land is being utilised. Of the 25 plots, 11 were allotted for residential purposes, eight for non-residential, four for educational, and two for medical facilities. But the authorities have no idea if the plots have seen any activity aligned with the original purpose they were assigned for.
When contacted, a senior official said pleading anonymity, “Mhada cannot take any action in the absence of government approval as the allotment was approved by the state government.”
He added, “These plots have been blocked for no reason by people who are also unwilling to respond to Mhada’s correspondence. Only two allottees approached the high court when the state decided to cancel the allotment.”
With a rapidly contracting real estate and ever-swelling demand, the mere idea that chunks of land are lying fallow hurts the common man’s interest. All eyes are now on Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan, who must give his nod to a proposal asking to retract these allotments.
Playing fast and loose
Mhada, which has some premium properties at various locations in Mumbai, has used many for creating affordable housing. But people with pull, enjoying proximity to the political movers, got certain plots allotted in their names.
“They have not bothered to go for mandatory lease agreements with Mhada, nor do they pay any lease rent to the authority,” a senior government functionary told MiD DAY.
The total number of such plots, allotted in the name of trusts and individuals since 1989, is 107, as per records. But 25 of these, allotted starting year 1992, do not have lease deeds. The chief minister, who heads the state housing department, will now decide whether to give his go-ahead to initiate the process of cancellation of the allotments. He is expected to take a call anytime, said sources.
Proposal awaiting CM’s nod
The housing department proposal submitted to CM Chavan says the allottees of the 25 plots have not bothered to go for a lease agreement, nor have they given any response to Mhada’s notices so a course of action may be charted.
Status of plots: Unknown
According to government officers, the exact status of the plot is unknown as senior officers rarely conduct site visits, leaving periodic checks to the authority’s lower-rank officers. “The possibility of misuse of the plots by encroachments or third-party uses, in cahoots with the officials, cannot be ruled out,” he said. The proposal submitted for CM’s approval also seeks permission to issue notices to beneficiaries before cancellation of the allotments under natural justice to hear their side.
27.5 acres Combined area of the properties
25 Number of plots scattered across Mumbai
3,552.10 sq m
Malwani (2002), Kasegaon Education Society: For educational purpose. Mhada says it doesn’t know which plot was allotted.
5,000 sq m
Malwani (1999), Tarun Bharat Parivar CHS: For residential purpose.
10,000 sq m
Oshiwara (1996), Tajcrack CHS: For residential purpose, Mhada says it was merged with an adjacent plot.
1,619 sq m
Oshiwara (1998), Prdnyapuri CHS: Mhada says this residential plot has been merged into the adjacent plot.
2,222 sq m
Oshiwara (1998), Shri Saishraddha CHS: Residential purpose
1,200 sq m
Oshiwara (1999), Hiranyagarbha CHS: Residential purpose.
10,000 sq m
Oshiwara (2000), Nargis Dutt Memorial Charitable Trust: Hospital. Mhada says the trust has demanded refund of part payment of the premium it has paid.
Oshiwara (2000), Madarsa Anjuman Khairun Trust: Non residential school.
6,100 sq m
Juhu-Vile Parle (1992), G N Garodia Charitable Trust: For educational purpose, Mhada says plot is under litigation as it was later allotted to NMMIS.
987 sq m JVPD (1999), Bhaskar Garage: the purpose is not recorded.
2,000 sq m
Juhu-Vile Parle (2003), Parasmani CHS: Residential purpose. Allotment was cancelled and the plot was later allotted to Bohra community, the decision has been challenged in the high court.
150 sq m
Goregaon (W), Upnagar Rugna Seva Kendra (1998): For chemist shop and godown.
400 sq m
Goregaon (W), (1998)
B D Munagekar: Mhada says the matter is under litigation. Allotted for chemist shop and godown.
7,075 sq m
Goregaon (2003), Payal CHS: For residential purpose.
Goregaon, Lokmudra Prakashan: Though the orders were issued to allot a plot in 2003, no specific details
Dindoshi (1999), R V Khot and others: non-residential purpose. Mhada says its allotment was cancelled but the state government is yet to ratify.
1,593 sq m
Andheri (2003), Blue Star Realtors Pvt ltd: For commercial purpose.
1,111.50 sq m
Versova (2003), Dinshaw Tropinex Builders Pvt Ltd: For commercial purpose.
6,000 sq m
Versova (1999), Nanu Recreation: Non-residential and playground. The matter is under litigation, says Mhada.
Mulund (E), Maharashtra Police CHS Federation (1998)- For residential purpose. Now Mhada says allotment can be cancelled as it falls under CRZ.
7,345 sq m
Bahubhashiya Mumbai Patrakar Sanshta (2002), near Kurla Dairy: For residential purpose.
550 sq m
Bandra (W) (1999), Bandra Roman CHS: For residential purpose.
1,000 sq M
Bandra (E) (2002), Subhash Ramchandra Chavan, Gandhi Nagar: For residential purpose.
432 sq m
Chembur (2000), Shri Sai Lokseva Ayurvedik Healing Centre: Dispensary
Turbhe (2001), Unique Education Academy: For school.