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Cremation in Pune IT park: District admin assures land for village crematorium

Villagers enlighted the officials about their plight and stated that they have been waiting for a crematorium for the community since the past 10 years.

pune Updated: Jul 13, 2017 13:49 IST
Shrinivas Deshpande
MIDC issued a certificate of 6,000 square feet land for the crematorium but land owners refused the gram panchayat’s request to construct the crematorium.
MIDC issued a certificate of 6,000 square feet land for the crematorium but land owners refused the gram panchayat’s request to construct the crematorium.(HT PHOTO)

A day after this newspaper highlighted the shocking cremation of a villager’s body by the side of a busy road at the Rajiv Gandhi Infotech Park at Hinjewadi on July 7, the district administration swung into action and assured land earmarked for the crematorium.

BJP’s city MP, Anil Shirole and PMRDA CEO Kiran Gitte also promised immediate action on this front.

Earlier in the day, Pune Zilla Parishad CEO Daulat Desai, accompanied by Block Development Officers (BDO) Smita Patil and Ganesh Shinde, visited village Gawarewadi and held a meeting with the villagers to understand the problems faced by them.

When informed that the 6,000 sq.ft plot was earmarked for the crematorium a decade ago but not handed over to the village, the ZP officials assured swift action on this front.

“Land will be handed over to the villagers within 2-3 days with police protection. Legal action would be taken if anybody obstructs the handing over proceedings,” Desai said while speaking to Hindustan Times. Later, he directed BDO Smita Patil to ensure that land for the crematorium was handed over to the village on Tuesday itself.

Resident District Collector (Pune) Rajendra Muthe said that directions had already been issued to the Deputy Collector to look into this issue. “The tehesildar has also visited Gawarwadi village and has started working on their grievances,” he said.

It was on Friday that residents of Gawarewadi cremated the body of 33-year-old Parmeshwar Gaware on the Boirwadi-Maangaon road near their village.

in Phase-3 of the Rajiv Gandhi Infotech Park, stunning IT Park employees and bringing the moving traffic to a halt.

The villagers who saw the cremation as a form of protest said they had so far undertaken about 40 cremations on the IT Park road and would continue to do so till their demand was met. They had also threatened to undertake the 10th day post-death rituals at the same spot.

Speaking to HT, the villagers spoke of how their lands were consumed in the creation of the IT Park and how they had been struggling for the last 10 years to get a decent crematorium for the community.

About seven years ago, the Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC) which acquired land for the IT Park issued a certificate stating that six guntha (about 6,000 sq.ft) land for the crematorium had been handed over to the village for the purpose of a crematorium. The land owners however, refused to cooperate with the village Panchayat for the purpose of constructing the crematorium.

Gawarewadi sarpanch, Sandeep Sathe told HT that the Gram Panchayat was keen to construct a decent crematorium for the villagers; however, what they needed was the land. “We will soon start the construction the moment we get the land in our possession. This is our right and we will fight for it,’ he said.

BJP MP Anil Shirole: It is shocking that the residents living around Hinjewadi IT Park did not have a crematorium facility. Although this area does not fall under my Lok Sabha constituency, the IT Park is the pride of Pune city. As an MP from the ruling party, I will definitely look into the matter and ask the PMRDA (Pune Metropolitian Region Development Authrority) Chief Executive Officer Kiran Gitte to look into the matter urgently.

PMRDA CEO Kiran Gitte: This area comes under the PMRDA jurisdiction. The Authority will definitely look into the matter and examine the precise status of the plot allotted for the cremation. If necessary, the PMRDA will provide reservation for crematorium land in the Development Plant immediately.