Slowdown may cost MCD Rs 800 crore
The municipal Corporation of Delhi's Civic Centre on Minto Road, on its to way to becoming the tallest building in the city, was the best office space on offer for government agencies planning to move out of crumbling buildings. Till the downturn happened.
The MCD had earlier decided in-principle to give out half of the building to the Income Tax department on 99 years lease. But it had committed one mistake — it didn't finalise the deal. And the delay may cost the civic body
anywhere between Rs 600 crore to Rs 800 crore.
"The economic slump has affected the deal. If we had finalised it a few months back, it would have been better. We are still trying to reason out with the Income tax department but it seems unlikely that they would agree to the earlier amount," said a senior MCD official requesting anonymity.
Had the deal been sealed earlier, the MCD would have got a cool Rs 2,400 crore for 5.34 lakh square feet of space, sources said. But after the changed circumstances, even Rs 1,600 crore-Rs 1,800 crore seems a good offer.
The civic agency does not want to rent out the place to any private company and hence is still trying to persuade the Income Tax department to agree to the previous deal. "We don't want to any private players in the Civic Centre. Being a government agency, it is easy to deal with another government department," added the official.
Eighteen government agencies had approached the MCD for space in the Civic Centre. Most of them were nationalised banks. The Rajya Sabha Secretariat and the Delhi Police had also shown interest. But the MCD got into a deal with only the Income Tax department.
The 28-storey structure will also house the MCD headquarters.
After the cabinet meeting, chief minister Arvind Kejriwal said the new buses will start arriving from August 2022 and by September 2023, all buses, including the 1,500 electric and 450 CNG-run air-conditioned buses, will be inducted into the city fleet.
Strong protests by pro-Jammu parties erupted in Jammu on Wednesday over barbaric murder of tailor Kanhaiya Lal in Udaipur. The protesters owing allegiance to the Dogra Front, Shiv Sena and Bajrang Dal raised slogans against the brutal killing and demanded strict action against the perpetrators. They also demanded sacking of the Ashok Gehlot-led government over the deteriorating law and order situation in Rajasthan. The protesters also burnt effigies of the two attackers.
Jammu & Kashmir lieutenant governor Manoj Sinha held a meeting with several political leaders of the union territory at Raj Bhawan in Srinagar on Wednesday evening. The meeting was held to discuss the current situation in J&K and the Amarnath Yatra that will begin on Thursday. The Lt Governor said the meeting was held to discuss the management of Amarnath Yatra. PDP chief spokesman Suhail Bukhari, however, didn't say whether pDP president Mehbooba Mufti will attend the meeting.
Amid tight security first batch of yatris reached Baltal on Wednesday, one of the base camps for the Amarnath Yatra, as the pilgrims will have a night halt at the camp. On Thursday morning they will be leaving for the holy cave. At several places, documents were checked thoroughly. Every year the annual Amarnath yatra is taken from two routes via Baltal in Ganderbal and Pahalgam in Anantnag district. Some pilgrims were busy chanting hymns.
A 15-year-old pedestrian succumbed to injuries sustained after being hit by an SUV near Botanical garden, Chandigarh. Lavanya was identified as Lavanya, 15, a resident of Nayagaon. The incident took place on Tuesday when Lavanya was crossing the road near gate number 1 of Botanical Garden. She where she succumbed to her injuries on Wednesday. Lavanya is survived by The victim's mother, Nancy Sharma, who works in a hotel and 10-year-old brother, and her father.