State plans to hire new developers to execute stalled slum revamp projects

Approximately 40,000 families in the 520 stalled slum revamp projects across Mumbai may heave a sigh of relief as the Maharashtra government plans to appoint new developers to execute them
Housing minister Jitendra Awhad HT File Photo
Housing minister Jitendra Awhad HT File Photo
Published on Apr 28, 2022 09:49 PM IST
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By, Mumbai

Approximately 40,000 families in the 520 stalled slum revamp projects across Mumbai may heave a sigh of relief as the Maharashtra government plans to appoint new developers to execute them. The majority of the families are waiting for houses in redeveloped buildings.

“We have removed builders who have not done anything or left the projects halfway. In their place, we will appoint those builders who are financially sound and have the competency to execute the projects,” Housing minister Jitendra Awhad said on Thursday.

“We are seeing that these slum dwellers have vacated their dwellings and are now on roads. The erring builders have failed to provide them rent money and have destroyed their life,” the minister said.

The Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA) had in 1996 started a redevelopment scheme. However, it has been dogged by several problems like manipulating the number of slum dwellers, floor space index violation, using coercion to obtain consent, infighting among slum residents, giving false promises, and creating substandard buildings and amenities.

Many are small-time builders who tend to acquire residents’ consent and then sell the project to bigger developers. These small-time builders would give false promises and later take a U-turn causing resentment among slum dwellers.

The Tinaikar committee formed by former chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh had slammed the SRA scheme as one tailored for the benefit of builders but the state ignored its recommendations.

Meanwhile, speaking at a real estate seminar, Awhad blamed builders for constructing exclusive community enclaves in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region. “Builders are responsible for discrimination by saying particular sections are not allowed to buy apartments. They should focus on selling and not be bothered which religion the purchaser belongs to or what they eat. They are destroying the harmony and I will take it up very strongly with the government,” he said.

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