Mumbai : The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s (BMC) oldest gymkhana situated at the Aazad Maidan likely to lose some part of land for the Mumbai Metro-3 work.
Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Ltd. (MMRCL) has asked the municipal corporation to hand over Gymkhana’s 254 square metres of land for Metro-3 project work.
However, what would be constructed on that land is still unclear. While the employees of the Gymkhana presume that it will have entry or exit point of the Metro station.
The oldest Gymkhana popularly known as Brihanmumbai Mahanagarpalika Krida Bhavan (BMKB) has seven thousand members including lifetime members who participate in various international tournaments and state level competitions like table tennis, cricket, kho-kho, badminton, carom under the banner of BMC.
Recently, Rajesh Mudam, BMC Administrative Officer and member of BMKB, won gold medal in Sri Lanka in table tennis tournament.
Now members and the BMC employees who practise over there are in fear that the Metro 3 project will take away their only gymkhana, which helps them to revive their sports skills after busy working schedule.
Another retired employee of BMC and member of the Gymkhana said, “When Manohar Joshi was Chief Minister we requested to provide us some part of Aazad Maidan land, so we can start outdoor games over here, he was positive and even permission was granted.”
The Gymkhana of Aazad Maidan has no place to carry outdoor games and members can only play indoor games like table tennis, carom. For outdoor games they have to go to Shivaji Park, Dadar Gymkhana centre.
Earlier, the MMRCL the implementing agency of Rs. 23 crore Colaba-Bandra-Seepez metro line project asked Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) to surrender 22 pitches it controls at the Aazad Maidan. MMRC has asked to remove the wickets at least for five years till the construction is completed.
MCA operates the 22 pitches at Azad Maidan, holding tournaments and coaching camps for hundreds of budding cricketers. Apart from Aazad Maidan land, MMRC has altogether demanded 14 other plots from BMC for various reasons.
The proposal was tabled in Improvements Committee of BMC few days back, wherein the Chairman Bala Anant Nar scheduled a visit on August 16 with all committee members on the plots, before rejecting or approving the proposal from the civic body.
Meanwhile, the MMRCL has already taken over few other open spaces like Sane Guruji Udyan in Prabhadevi, part of Colaba Woods Garden in Cuffe Parade, Oval Maidan in Churchgate and Azad Maidan at CST for Metro 3 work.