PUNE: The state government has converted reservations on 166 hectare land earmarked in the Baner-Balewadi Development Plan (DP) into residential purpose making way for more constructions in the area. The state has vacated 136.59 hectare town planning scheme reservation and 30 hectare reservation for biotechnology and agri-business zone. Now the de-reserved land could be used for residential projects.
The state government issued a notification on August 20 and appealed to citizens to file suggestions and objections by September 20. Maps of the changes in DP have been made available in the office of the municipal commissioner and the state town planning department in Pune.
Earlier when the state approved the DP for 23 villages merged in PMC limits, it had reserved the decision on DP for planning unit number 1 (Baner and Balewadi). The PMC had approved the DP in 2005 and proposed 136.59 hectare town planning scheme reservation and 30 hectare reservation for biotechnology and agri business zone.
In 2008, Green Pune Movement (GPM), the umbrella of various civic groups and political activists across party lines, has succeeded in collecting 70,000 suggestions and objections against the changes made by the state government in the Development Plan (DP) for Baner and Balewadi.
Now, the state has used its special powers to vacate the reservations. However, the state has now earmarked reservation on 9.5 hectare of the total de-reserved land for amenities like play grounds, schools, hospitals, auditoriums etc.
A few years ago, the state government-appointed Maharashtra Remote Sensing Applications Centre (MRSAC) had submitted its report stating that “no significant deviations” were made in the DP maps for Baner-Balewadi that were approved by the general body of the PMC and those which were submitted to the state government by the civic administration. The Green Pune Movement had alleged that the civic administration had not incorporated the amendments made by the PMC general body in the DP.