A day after issuing orders to take back its prime plot at Cuffe Parade — on which the iconic World Trade Centre (WTC) stands — the Maharashtra government formally took possession of the plot on Friday. It sealed some of the offices of M Visvesvaraya Industrial Research and Development Centre (MVIRDC) directors, the original lease holders of the plot.
The state will also approach the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) for further action as MVIRDC is registered under the Companies Act and four government representatives are on its board. The state has also filed a caveat in the Bombay high court with regard to this.
MVIRDC directors remained unavailable for comment despite calls made to the directors and an email sent to the company id - email@example.com.
Mumbai collector Ashwini Joshi visited WTC on Friday and addressed a meeting of all sub-lease holders to ensure there was no panic among them. She told them to henceforth pay a monthly outgoing amount as maintenance to the collector’s office, instead of the MVIRDC.
“The government will appoint a common facilitation centre at the premises on Monday to ensure daily operations are unaffected,” Joshi told HT.
On November 24, the collector passed an order repossessing WTC land from the original lease holders, for violating the lease agreement. The 42,025-sq m plot was given to MVIRDC on a lease of 99 years and the WTC was constructed there in 1970.
A report prepared by the collector in this case, suggested that the government needs to approach the NCLT to probe the complaints made by the MVIRDC lessee association. The report was submitted to the principal secretary of the revenue department on September 3. Based on this, the state will approach the NCLT, said a senior official from the revenue department.
When contacted, Vijay Kalantri, vice president MVIRDC, said he was not in town and referred HT to YR Warerkar, executive director. Warerkar too could not be contacted. Beenal Gandhi, assistant director, coordination refused to comment.