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Rajeev Bhaskar , Hindustan Times
Jalandhar, July 08, 2013
Amidst stiff opposition by local bodies' minister and senior deputy mayor of Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) against the move to sell-off abandoned Municipal Corporation properties, to generate funds for development works, mayor Sunil Jyoti on Monday clarified that there is no immediate move to sell off any MC's land.

"As several chunks of MC land is lying abandoned, it was decided to plan optimum use of it for which the issue of extending all rights of such properties to Finance & Contracts Committee (F&CC) has been included in the agenda of general house of MC, scheduled to be held on Tuesday", Mayor told Hindustan Times.

Terming the controversy over the issue as 'media hype', mayor said, "Don't you think that it is part of good governance to plan for optimum use of the abandoned land, rather than leaving it for encroachment?"

Once rights are extended, F&CC would appoint a consultant to seek an advice regarding optimum use of the land, the mayor said.

"We will try for commercial use like giving the land on lease or initiate any project on the Private-Public-Partnership (PPP) mode", he said adding that selling off the abandoned land would also be one of the option, if suggested by the consultant to get maximum revenue.

"If the sale of abandoned land would be found the most viable option by the consultant, then the issue would be re-brought on the floor of general house after getting formal nod from the local bodies minister", Mayor added.

It is pertinent to mention here that earlier it was projected that about 25 acres of land is abandoned and a proposal to sell it off to generate funds for pending development works in the city was made.

Immediately after the news regarding the proposal was published in the media, it was criticised and condemned by none other than the local bodies' minister, Bhagat Chunni Lal, apart from the senior deputy mayor Kamaljit Singh Bhatia and councillors of the opposition.