Mumbai: Rights to plot meant for labourers given to private builder, claim activists

Updated: Nov 07, 2019, 07:42 IST | Sanjeev Shivadekar | Mumbai

Housing project runs into trouble after allegations of financial fraud against Mathadi Worker housing society; state's Co-operative Department schedules hearing on November 16

The four partially constructed buildings seen in Wadala. Pics/ Bipin Kokate
The four partially constructed buildings seen in Wadala. Pics/ Bipin Kokate

The nearly 12-acre prime plot in an upscale area in Wadala, which has been reserved for houses meant for Mathadi workers, has run into trouble after allegations of financial fraud.'

A Pune-based social activist, Santosh Chavan, has filed a complaint with the state's Co-operative Department alleging large-scale financial irregularities and violation of norms by the members of the association that claims to work for the welfare of labourers engaged in loading and unloading of goods.

According to the complainant, rights of nearly 15 per cent of the total plot have been given to a private developer. "The plot has been allotted by the government for poor labourers' residences. But, those managing the Mathadi Worker Co-operative housing society have flouted norms and have given away rights to a private builder and that too without taking permission from the government," Chavan alleged.

The activist in his complaint has even claimed that money from several workers has been collected for the housing project. This exercise too is not devoid of irregularities. Currently, there are four partially built structures at the Wadala plot, where no construction is being carried out.

Association asks for more time

Meanwhile, taking cognisance of the development and the complaint, the Co-operative Department called for a hearing of both parties on the issue. The hearing, called by the Assistant Registrar of the department, was earlier scheduled for November 2 but was later rescheduled to November 16. "The representatives of the Mathadi Worker co-operative housing society has asked for time to prepare a reply to all the queries," the assistant registrar told mid-day on condition of anonymity.

Wadala

Further details of the case would be revealed once the hearing takes place, the assistant registrar said.

However, when contacted, joint general secretary of the Mathadi union, Popatrao Deshmukh, refuted all charges and instead questioned the complainant's intentions in the entire row. "This is being done to malign the image of those working for the welfare of Mathadi workers," Deshmukh added. The union leader also cited the recent statement of Narendra Patil, chairman of the Mathadi Worker co-operative housing society, in which Patil has categorically denied all charges that the activist has made against them and the union.

12 acre
Area reserved for the housing project

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