NAVI MUMBAI: Around 20,000 residents of the dilapidated JN1 and JN2 type buildings in Vashi, built by the City and Industrial Development Corporation (Cidco), have opposed the planning body's move of granting 3 FSI for the structures' redevelopment.
The buildings fall within Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC) jurisdiction. The civic body's 2.5 FSI rule was about to be passed by the state government.
Kishore Patkar, secretary of the JN1 and JN2 type buildings association, said, "An IIT technical expert team has already stated that the architectural design of the JN1 and JN 2 type buildings was faulty. Inferior quality materials were used for construction and the residents should recover the money from the concerned authorities, which is Cidco. In 1994, the Maharashtra government passed a GR stating that Cidco ceased to be the planning authority within NMMC jurisdiction and that the planning body can only demand lease premium. So, Cidco cannot pass notifications of granting FSI."
The residents blame the Congress leadership's political rivalry for creating impediments in redevelopment of the buildings. Patkar said, "Cidco's intention is to delay the project due to the political rivalry of local Congress leaders, Namdeo Bhagat, the Cidco director, and former deputy mayor, Ramakant Mhatre, who have crossed swords with NCP's Thane guardian minister Ganesh Naik."
In 1999, Cidco declared the JN1 and JN2 type buildings as dilapidated and dangerous. Gawade said, "Then, 112 families were shifted to a transit camp in Juinagar, provided by Cidco. Now, Cidco has sent us notices to pay rent, between Rs 5-6 lakh per house, for residing in the transit camps, which is unjust."
Local Congress leaders said they wanted Cidco to undertake the redevelopment work so as to maintain the transparency in appointing a private builder. Congress leader Ramakant Mhatre said, "Now that Kishor Patkar himself is a private builder, he seems to have personal monetary interest in getting the contract for redevelopment of JN-type buildings. Cidco's plan of granting 3 FSI will be beneficial to the residents, as transparency will be maintained in the process of appointing a builder."
Namdeo Bhagat, Congress corporator and Navi Mumbai District Congress president, said, "A handful of JN-type residents, in connivance with Kishore Patkar, are opposing the proposal of 3 FSI for alleged personal gains. We shall inquire into the matter by visiting every household in the JN-type buildings."