Only 9 playgrounds are available, out of the total 174 reservations made in the Development Plan of 1987 and there are no changes in the recently released new DP of the city for its old boundary. In percentage there are only 5.17 playgrounds in the city. The reason behind the remaining 165 reservations for play grounds in the city was non-implementation of the earlier DPs by Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC).
The 174 playgrounds reservations including children playgrounds are at Ganesh Peth, Sahakarnagar, Shaniwar Peth, Mangalwar Peth, Bhawani Peth, Datta Wadi, Erandwane, Shuvajinagar Bhamburda, Pashan, Aundh, Sangamwadi, Dhanori, Yerwada, Lohagaon Wadgaon Sheri, Mundhawa, Wanawadi, Kondhawa, Budhwar Peth, Shukrawar Peth, Raviwar Peth, Nana Peth, Guruwar Peth, Somwar Peth, Dhankawadi, Manjari etc.
The list indicates that Pravati and Kothrud have maximum reservations of 9 reservations whereas Hadapsar have 8 reservations for playgrounds as per the list published in the DP in 1987.
Ujjwal Keskar, former PMC Corporator and member of City Improvement Committee, who had made the last DP in 1987, said, “The situation of enforcing the DP is very pathetic as only 12 per cent of it was enforced by the civic body including the 23 merged villages. There is a total area of 21.23 hectors reserved for the purpose of play ground and children’s play grounds in the city. The municipal corporation was not serious about the implementation part since last 47 years.”
Keskar referring his updated list of existing playgrounds in the city said, “Only 9 playgrounds out of 174 reservations are in use. It also includes 68 playgrounds and 106 children’s playgrounds in the total 174 playgrounds; in the city is the reality of today. Citizens should question to the civic body that how can a population touching 40 lakhs can get only 9 play grounds for children and youths in the city to play?”
Instead of commenting on the Congress stand of doing nothing on enforcing 164 reservation for playground, Avinash Bagwe, Chairman, Sports Committee, took a safe stand, said, “Not acquiring the reservations is a mistake and we need to take these grounds by enforcing the reservations on priority basis.”
PMC had also made 69 reservations for playgrounds in 23 merged villages in the new DP. Keskar said, “PMC should take action quickly of land acquisition before anybody could misuse these lands for other purposes. The reason is that the villages already have a big number of illegal constructions even on reserved lands for other purposes.”
Raju Pawar, Member, PMC Sports Committee, said, “The civic body only has Baburao Sanas Ground near Saras Baug. Nehru Stadium is another place but it is run by Pune Town Committee not PMC. But the 174 reservations of grounds need to be taken over.”
Aniruddha Pavaskar, Executive Engineer, DP Cell, PMC, only said, “There are no changes in the list play grounds and Children’s play grounds reservations in the city in the new DP. Under the provision of Maharashtra Regional Town Planning Act, citizen can raise this issue and ask for enforcing the prescribed reservation on these reserved grounds. In fact, the newly made DP for 2007 to 2027 has reservation for the play grounds in all the 23 merged villages.”
The nine PMC playgrounds
>> Vasantrao Bhagwat Maidan (Ground) Shanipar, Sadashiv Peth
>> Lokmanya Nagar Ground (now converted into Jogging Track and Park by MHADA)
>> Swatantryaveer Savarkar Kridangan, Sahakarnagar.
>> Taljai Hills, Corporator Subhash Jagtap developed the playground
>> Ground plus garden (Swami Samarth Udyan) Bhawani Peth
>> Gymnasium Hall near Palkhi Vithoba Junction, Nana Peth
>> Small Playground near Daruwala Pul, Tilak Ayurved College, Somwar Peth
>> Ground plus garden, near Wadia College and Ruby Hall Clinic
>> Hockey Ground near Khadki, off Pune Mumbai Highway