MUMBAI: Ahead of the 2017 civic polls, the revised draft development plan (DP) 2034 is being turned into a major issue by the Shiv Sena. While on one hand the party has opposed proposals to open up the no-development zones, on the other it is trying to lure slumdwellers and residents of old buildings in the city by demanding bigger tenements under slum redevelopment scheme and higher Floor Space Index (FSI) for the development of old buildings.
With the upcoming civic polls are likely to be a closely contested one between the Sena, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress, the Sena is looking at appeasing the slumdwellers who are large in numbers in the city and also the residents of old buildings in the island city. Thousands of Marathi-speaking families live in dilapidated buildings in south and south central Mumbai, in areas such as Girgaum, Byculla, Parel and Worli, seen as traditional Sena voters.
On Tuesday, leader of the house in BMC Trushna Vishwasrao (Sena) with senior party leaders industries minister Subhash Desai and legislator Sunil Prabhu met chief minister Devendra Fadanavis on the DP issue. Sena has written a letter by opposing the DP on issues like opening up the no development zones (NDZs) and salt pan lands for creating affordable housing.
In its letter, the Sena also has bigger homes under the SRA scheme and additional FSI for old buildings. Vishwasrao said, “With the SRA scheme, builders make big profit in sale components but slum dwellers are forced to stay in 269-square-feet homes. In revised DP, the civic body should do justice to poor people and ensure they get bigger houses.”
Sena threatened to oppose the DP on May 27 if these suggestions will not be included in the plan. The BJP, however, has chosen to keep silent on Sena’s stance.