Newly-appointed ministers lobby for posh Malabar Hill official bungalows

Published on Aug 16, 2022 12:31 AM IST

Of all ministerial residences, Ramtek in Malabar Hill most desirable, followed by Royal Stone in Peddar Road

Mumbai, India – August 16, 2018: A view of Ramtek Bungalow, at Walkeshwar, in Mumbai, India, on Thursday, Aug 16, 2018. (Photo by Bhushan Koyande/HT) (HT PHOTO)
Mumbai, India – August 16, 2018: A view of Ramtek Bungalow, at Walkeshwar, in Mumbai, India, on Thursday, Aug 16, 2018. (Photo by Bhushan Koyande/HT) (HT PHOTO)

Mumbai: Close on the heels of the appointment of new ministers in the Eknath Shinde-Devendra Fadnavis cabinet comes the allocation of official residences, and some properties are in high demand, officials privy to the developments have revealed. With its private beach and a sprawling lawn, Ramtek bungalow in Malabar Hill leads the list, followed by Royal Stone, a colonial-style bungalow with wooden flooring located in Peddar Road. Chitrakoot and Seva Sadan (both in Malabar Hill) are also among the most sought-after bungalows and the newly-appointed ministers are in a scramble for them. While Maharashtra Assembly Speaker Rahul Narvekar and revenue minister Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil have requested for Royal Stone, forest minister Sudhir Mungantiwar, labour minister Suresh Khade and Vikhe-Patil are vying for Ramtek bungalow, the largest bungalow after Varsha, the official residence of the chief minister.

Varsha, located in Malabar Hill, is spread over a sprawling 11,000 square feet (sq ft), while Ramtek is spread over 8,857 sq ft. Royal Stone is built over 7,357 sq ft.

Varsha was allotted to Shinde on August 5 but the CM continues to stay at Nandanvan, a 3,195 sq ft bungalow in Malabar Hill that he was allocated while still a minister in the previous Uddhav Thackeray-led Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government. Former revenue minister Balasaheb Thorat and former food and civil supplies minister Chhagan Bhujbal were residents of Royal Stone and Ramtek, respectively.

Deputy chief minister Devendra Fadnavis has been temporarily allocated Meghdoot, officials said. At present, Fadnavis resides in Sagar, a 5,524 sq ft bungalow, which he was allocated as leader of opposition in the previous government. Meghdoot (a 4,894 sq ft bungalow in in Malabar Hill) was previously the residence of former public works department (PWD) minister Ashok Chavan.

Chitrakoot, previously occupied by former social justice minister Dhananjay Munde, is another bungalow in demand and several ministers including Narvekar and food and civil supplies minister Sanjay Rathod are keen for its allotment. Rural development minister Girish Mahajan, water supply and sanitation minister Gulabrao Patil are lobbying for Seva Sadan, officials said. Mahajan is also reportedly keen to be allotted Shivneri, in Malabar Hill, which was his official residence in the Bharatiya-Janata Party led government.

“Ministers seek multiple options so as to get at least one of their choice of bungalows,” a senior official from the PWD department said. Senior Nationalist Congress Party leader Ajit Pawar will continue to stay at Devgiri bungalow (in Malabar Hill), which he occupied as deputy chief minister in the MVA government, and is now entitled to as opposition leader. He was officially allotted the bungalow on August 2.

Former BJP chief and current higher and technical education minister Chandrakant Patil is likely to be allotted A-9, a 3,041 sq ft bungalow opposite Mantralaya in Nariman Point.

Patil was reportedly keen to stay here, as this was the bungalow he occupied when the BJP-led government was in power. Employment guarantee scheme minister and Shiv Sena leader Sandipan Bhumre (who was also a minister in the Thackeray-led government) continues to stay on at K-2 bungalow, also located opposite Mantralaya.

He was reportedly also interested in A-9, but was asked by his party leadership to stay put at K-2, officials in the know said

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Faisal is with the political team and covers state administration and state politics. He also covers NCP.

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