The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s (BMC) proposal to take back a Juhu plot given under the caretaker policy to a private trust,
following violation of agreement, will be tabled in the civic improvements committee on Friday.
Bhalchandra Shirsat, chairman of the committee, said they would take a decision after discussion on the proposal.
The BMC bought the 4.5-acre recreational ground from the Maharashtra Housing
Area Development Authority in 1986.
The plot, earmarked a ‘city forest’ in JVPD scheme, was handed over to Ronson Foundation for development and maintenance in 1990.
In 1998, an agreement was drawn up allotting the plot to the trust under the caretaker policy.
Following complaints from citizens about lack of access to the ground and hacking of several trees, the BMC conducted an inquiry.
A tree census showed that of the 1300 trees on the plot, only 438 were remaining. The 1998 agreement, not ratified by the civic general body, was termed null and void. Also, the commencement certificate for construction on the plot had lapsed.
“A notice was issued to the trust. When they couldn’t explain their side, the municipal commissioner recommended taking back the land,” said a civic official. HT had reported the irregularities found by the BMC in February 26 and March 24.
This is one of the eight plots given to private trusts to build clubs and gymnasiums under the caretaker policy. “This proposal will lead to discussion on other plots given under the caretaker policy to political leaders, who are commercially exploiting the grounds,” said a corporator.