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PMRDA land auction in newly-acquired villages has residents crying foul

PUNE The Pune Metropolitan Region Development Authority (PMRDA) decision to auction 13 plots in Hinjewadi, Wagholi, Manjari, Bhukum, and Maan, has raised questions among residents since these amenity spaces are yet not determined and the Development Plan (DP) for these newly acquired villages is still in the process
By Prachi Bari
PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 08:09 PM IST

PUNE The Pune Metropolitan Region Development Authority (PMRDA) decision to auction 13 plots in Hinjewadi, Wagholi, Manjari, Bhukum, and Maan, has raised questions among residents since these amenity spaces are yet not determined and the Development Plan (DP) for these newly acquired villages is still in the process.

The PMRDA has issued a notice in this regard, according to which the land will be given on long-term lease to build infrastructure.

Citizen associations have sent letters of protest and demanded an immediate meeting with authorities on the same.

Suhas Divase, PMRDA chief said, “These plots that will be auctioned are surplus to the already-reserved amenity spaces. There are two issues here; one, we have always been auctioning extra spaces to create or generate revenue which will be used in strengthening or creating new infrastructure; and second, these amenity spaces will be auctioned only to create the reservations placed on it in the development control plans. Besides, last year PMRDA generated only 1/8th of the revenue from building permissions. Hence, this auction will help generate revenue to build better amenity spaces.”

Ravindra Sinha on behalf of the Hinjewadi Residents Welfare Association said, “The DP of PMRDA has not yet been finalised or sanctioned by the department of town planning, Maharashtra. So how has the PMRDA decided to auction the amenity plots? Also, the area of Hinjewadi and Maan is an urban area under gram panchayats that lack important civic services like garbage management, water supply, health and sanitation facilities, playgrounds, gardens, hospitals. The amenity spaces are deemed reservations as per the MRTP act and need to be reserved for these important civic services to be rendered by government authorities. Hence, we have called for a meeting to understand the PMRDA’s plans.”

Wagholi residents were angered by this notice and were concerned about why these land blocks were not used as amenities for the benefit of the residents.

“Our main concern is why these land blocks cannot be used for amenities for residents. When we go and ask for land for a garbage processing unit, the authorities have no money nor any land. Then where is this auction coming from?” asked Nitin Jain, Wagholi housing societies association.

“There is a drastic need for waste management, approach roads and drinking water in Wagholi,” said Sanjeev Kumar Patil, from Wagholi.

“Instead of providing these facilities through development revenue from builders, why is the PMRDA planning to sell mentioned amenity spaces? It would rather help us if these spaces were used for building hospitals and playgrounds. In the current pandemic situation, there is a dire need for hospitals in various areas to cater to the patients surrounding civilised areas,” he said.

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