Corporators across political parties unanimously opposed the controversial heritage list proposed by the Mumbai Heritage Conservation Committee (MHCC) during the special general body meeting of the BMC held on Saturday.
Rahul Shewale, Shiv Sena corporator and the standing committee chairman, alleged that the list had been doctored due to vested interests. He demanded a CID inquiry into the matter.
“When Sharad Upasani had submitted his report on heritage grading in 2008, Shivaji Park was given Grade II status. However, the same Shivaji Park is now shown under Grade I in the proposed heritage list report. Also there was a provision for bonus, TDR and incentives for heritage buildings in Upasani’s list.
However, the proposed list did not mention these things. We suspect that some bureaucrats have doctored the original report for vested interests. I demand a CID inquiry into the matter to expose errant officials who doctored the original report,”said Shewale.
Supporting Shewale, Dilip Patel, group leader of BJP, also demanded a CID inquiry claiming the proposed heritage list would affect development in the city.
“Basically, heritage buildings are meant to attract tourists. So authorities are supposed to provide extra TDR and incentives to heritage buildings. But no provision has been made in the published report. However, we have allotted just Rs five crore in our budget for heritage structures. How are we going to help all heritage structures with this meagre budget?” asked Patel.
All the corporators present vowed to oppose the draft heritage report. They demanded that it be scrapped or re-surveyed and sought to meet the Chief Minister to express their opposition.
“We should keep politics aside on this issue and should meet the CM to express our opposition to the heritage report,” said Dyanraj Nikam, opposition leader of BMC.
Yashodhar Phanse, leader of the house, tabled the proposal against the proposed heritage list. Over 40 corporators raised their voice against the proposed heritage list in the general body meeting.
The list comprises over 800 structures. It includes over 14 temples, about eight mosques, 20 churches, Buddhist temple, Mariamman temple in Malad and other properties including wells, lakes and grounds.