Mumbai: Maharashtra government today said in the Legislative Assembly here that there had been no correspondence between the then Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan and the Centre or the British High Commission about acquiring a house in London where Dr B R Ambedkar had lived.
In a written reply to Dilip Walse-Patil (NCP), social justice minister Rajkumar Badole said the advertisement for sale of this house through an auction was published by the owner on September 1, 2014.
Valse-Patil had sought to know why there was a delay in the acquisition of the property (to turn it into a memorial for Ambedkar) when Chavan had written to the High Commission seeking to stop the auction and sought permission of the Centre to buy it (during the Congress-NCP rule in the state).
He claimed that as per the request the auction was stopped for four months but the NDA government at the Centre did not give permission for the purchase.
The minister said the state cabinet, on February 3 this year, gave in principle approval for the purchase.
A committee has been set up (headed by Badole himself) for further action. "10 per cent of the asking price has been deposited with the concerned solicitor," he said, denying that Chavan did not have any correspondence over it when he was the Chief Minister.
Ambedkar had lived in this London house when he was a student at the London School of Economics.