The civic body has decided to curtail the budget provision for constructing underground parking lots in South Mumbai from Rs 100 crore to Rs 5 crore.
This is the second time the funds have been cut in one month, which raises doubts about the implementation of the project in the near future.
In the last fiscal, the civic body had set aside Rs 173 crore for the underground project, but the amount remained unused. This year, the civic administration proposed Rs 100 crore for the same.
But the civic standing committee reduced the amount to Rs 25 crore and finally while discussing the budget in the civic general body, it was brought down to Rs 5 crore.
As per the plan, the BMC will build seven parking lots between Regal Cinema and Crawford Market. Each lot will have a parking capacity of 1,400 vehicles. After spending Rs 440 crore, the BMC will hand them over to a private firm to operate and earn profit for the next 30 years.
The project has been awarded to a consortium of Venue Infrastructure and WOHR Parking System Pvt Ltd (India), whose managing director is Girish Vyas, son-in-law of senior Shiv Sena leader Manohar Joshi.
Vyas told Hindustan Times, “We are just the technical partners. The contract has not been awarded to us. We will maintain the parking lots for the next 30 years.”
“The cost of the project should be at least 50% less than the amount quoted. We will try to reduce it or float tenders again,” a senior official said on condition of anonymity.
Currently, the cost per car parking space comes to about Rs 36 lakh.