The proposal for an exclusive gymkhana for MLAs and MLCs in south Mumbai has come under the Bombay High Court’s scanner following a public interest litigation.
A proposal was mooted in 2002 for a gymnasium in Cuffe Parade, spread over 23,000 sq m, which would be reserved for only MLAs and MLCs.
“Why do you want it only for them [MLAs and MLCs]? Let them interact with public without elections. Then they will know the ground reality,” said Justice J.N. Patel while hearing the PIL filed by NGO Janhit Manch.
A division bench of Justice Patel and Justice B.R. Gavai also questioned additional government pleader Nitin Deshpande on the debt of government.
“Why do you want to spend nearly Rs 200-300 crore on developing a gymkhana when the government is under debt?” asked Justice Gavai.
In July 2002, about 125 legislators had signed a letter and given to then chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh saying that the plot owned by government near World Trade Centre in Cuffe Parade should be converted into a gymnasium for legislators. The PIL stated that the plot should be developed as a public playground instead of developing it for a privileged few.