The consultant who prepared Mumbai’s draft development plan will face no action, the civic body said on Saturday.
“In our records, we have found nothing wrong against the consultant, so there is no question of taking action against them. Their role in preparing the draft plan is over and the errors are not in reality a mistake,” civic chief Sitaram Kunte told HT.
Kunte said the land reserved in the development plan (DP) was done so according to their status at the time of the GIS mapping by the firm.
“For instance, if a building was razed for redevelopment and the mapping was done then, the land is marked as an open space because its status at the time was vacant. We cannot blame the firm or call it an error,” he said.
The civic body’s stance is significant, as citizens and activists have already said they fear only minor changes will be made to the DP now and that the state’s move could be eyewash. On Saturday, HT reported about how the BMC would only correct errors in reservations, but not change policy decisions or look into citizens' complaints.
Decisions on reversing the hike in floor space index or the development of Aarey Colony would not be considered in the next four months, Kunte said. “Only incorrectly marked structures and areas will be rectified.”
The consultant – a joint venture of a French company and Bangalore firm Egis Geoplan was given the contract in 2010 to map the DP at a cost of Rs5.32 crore. However, it failed to complete the work because of financial constraints, officials said. The firm was then given a two-year extension and the contract was revised to Rs12crore.
Despite the extension, the draft plan had numerous errors – it did not mark certain heritage buildings or religious structures. Several other buildings, areas and roads were wrongly marked.
Citizens have demanded that action be initiated against the consultants.
Despite several attempts, Egis’ Mumbai development plan preparation team was unavailable for comment. The consultants will not be involved in the revision process.