State assures white paper on Dharavi redevelopment project | Mumbai news - Hindustan Times

State assures white paper on Dharavi redevelopment project

Jul 10, 2024 09:18 AM IST

Mahayuti govt to release white paper on Dharavi Redevelopment Project following allegations of irregularities by former CM. Govt denies corruption claims.

The Mahayuti government will soon release a white paper on the Dharavi Redevelopment Project (DRP), the revenue minister, Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil, announced in the state assembly on Tuesday.

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HT Image

Vikhe Patil made this announcement while responding to the allegations of irregularities in the Dharavi Redevelopment Project (DRP). “Following the demand made by Prithviraj Chavan (former chief minister), the state government will come out with a white paper on DRP. The government has nothing to hide,” he said.

While speaking on the budgetary allocation for various departments, Prithviraj Chavan had hit out at the government saying that the Dharavi Redevelopment project (DRP) is a big scam and huge land parcels are being handed over to its promoter Adani. “There is no mention of the handing over of the government land for the project. Whether it is Kurla dairy land, salt pan land in Mulund or a land parcel at Deonar, the tender document has no mention of it. This needs to be investigated, to find out the losses to the government revenue. Someone else would have submitted the lowest bid if it had a mention in the tender document,” he said.

Demanding a white paper on DRP, Chavan said that with the change in the government, this project will be scrapped.

Countering this, revenue minister Vikhe Patil said that the state government has 26% share in the DRP project and the private developer 74%. “The picture being painted that DRP is a big corruption case is false. We have taken all precautions to ensure that the state exchequer will face no losses,” he said.

Referring to the Kurla dairy plot, which is owned by the state animal husbandry department, he said that when it was realised that it could be an appropriate place for rehabilitation, it was transferred to the revenue department and subsequently to DRP. “The decision to this effect was taken by the state cabinet,” he remarked.

He also added that the state revenue department has started revision of the decisions taken in the past in which land parcels were allotted to builders. A probe has also been initiated into the same,” he said, adding that the government will come out with a white paper on those decisions as well.

Joining the war of words, leader of opposition in legislative assembly, Vijay Wadettiwar, alleged that a GST commissioner from Gujarat purchased 640-acre land in Satara district at a throwaway price and later flouted the rules related to forest and environment during the development of the land. “The construction was done on land which is environmentally sensitive. The illegal construction was done without following the due procedure. I want to know what action the state government will take against the officer,” he said.

Wadettiwar also alleged that huge encroachment has taken place in the eco-sensitive zone of the Tungareshwar Sanctuary and the forest officers were party to the illegal constructions. “Thirty-five such illegal constructions are either completed or are underway, at the cost of the ecology and wildlife. Some of these are commercial establishments. The officials are supporting the illegal constructions as their palms are greased with bribes of lakhs of rupees per month,” he said.

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