MHADA's ghost plot of Goregaon: BMC launches probe
Mid-day Follow-upÂ» Following this paper's expose on how MHADA sold a civic plot to a builder, BMC chief orders probe
The civic administration has ordered a probe to find out how a prime plot on SV Road in Goregaon was taken away by a private builder right from under its nose. Measuring 5,564 sqft, the plot belongs to the civic body but has been developed by Goregaon-based Asmi Developers.
Immediately after mid-day's report, Municipal Commissioner Ajoy Mehta instructed his officials to get more details in the matter. "This is serious. Need to get into details of the issue. I have asked the concerned ward officer to get all papers pertaining to the case," Mehta told mid-day over the phone.
No construction activity can take place on plots that belongs to the corporation, say civic officials. File Pic
In 2003, the Maharashtra Housing Area Development Authority (MHADA), which owned CTS plot number 339 (admeasuring 19,654 sqft), entered into agreement with a housing society for the plot's development. But, while doing so, it allowed the developer to use the plot adjacent to it — plot number 340 — for construction or a commercial-cum-residential tower. However, according to BMC records, there has been no transfer of the land to any individual, society or developer.
MHADA CEO Milind Mhaiskar has already assured a thorough probe in the matter. While the developer maintains that only part of the BMC plot has been used and that the land in contention is still in BMC's name, civic officials said no construction activity can take place on plots that belongs to the corporation. "Who is at fault needs to be investigated. Once the inquiry is done, further course of action will be decided," an official said, adding, "Even how the building plan was approved by then officials of the building proposal department needs to be examined."
Ajoy Mehta, Municipal Commissioner
Meanwhile, Opposition in the BMC wants an independent probe. "In many cases, it has been observed that the BMC is at the losing end as civic officials are hand in glove with the alleged beneficiary. Whether in this case too there was a nexus needs to be investigated," Rais Shaikh, Samajwadi Party group leader in the civic house, said.
Even MNS has demanded stern action against the developer and errant officials. "BMC is not only aware about what is happening on the plot that belongs to them, but it is also unable to protect it from encroachment. This clearly shows the city has become unmanageable for the municipal corporation," said former MNS group leader Sandeep Deshpande.
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