Chief minister Prithviraj Chavan made two crucial announcements barely 30 minutes before the code of conduct for the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation elections came into effect on Tuesday. The first one cleared the decks for new development control rules (DCR) for Mumbai, while the second pertains to the redevelopment of Dharavi.
Chavan said that the amended DCR norms will weed out corruption in clearing building proposals and ultimately bring down realty rates. The decision to clear redevelopment of Dharavi, starting with Sector 5, he said, will provide relief to nearly 60,000 families residing there.
Critics have termed these last-minute announcements as poll gimmicks. “It remains to be seen if this will actually benefit the common man or help in increasing the contribution of builders to the chief minister’s election fund,’’ said Vinod Tawde, senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader.
The amended DCR norms have brought all areas in a building layout computable under Floor Space Index (FSI). An FSI is the amount of construction allowed on a particular plot. Higher the FSI, more the number of floors that can be added. Earlier, some areas like balcony, flower beds, terraces, etc, were free of FSI.
The free FSI was offered to developers at the discretion of municipal officials, leading to charges of “illegal gratification”.
The procedure has now been standardised. It allows compensatory FSI up to 35 per cent for residential development and 20 per cent for industrial development, to be purchased for a premium. .
The amended norms are also expected to provide relief to residents of old, dilapidated buildings. There are approximately 16,000 such buildings in the city.