Mumbai: BMC’s Borivli retail market building used as banquet hall

Mumbai: The BMC ground plus two-storey building located in Eksar Village in Chikoowadi at Borivali West, which was meant for the displaced hawkers and the retail market is being used as a banquet hall given to Naresh Rajwani to benefit him, it is alleged.

According to activist Regge Abraham, the building was constructed for retailers and hawkers, displaced from different places, who are the real PAPs. But, the BMC has given the building to Naresh Rajwani, who is running a banquet hall, Divine, in the ground floor. The shops on the upper floors are closed, but one or two are given to people running dance classes.

Notably, the site was inspected by Sangita Hansale, the additional commissioner (market), R Central ward, in December 2018, but no action was taken. Further, Abraham approached the lokayukta to file his complaint, seeking a reply from BMC. The activist said initially false reports were submitted by assistant commissioner Hansale on March 26. Now, the market department has to file their version till May 30 to the lokayukta.

Since the report submitted by her failed to satisfy Abraham, as, he claimed, the report was false. He wanted a detailed report how and why the hall was allowed there. The building was meant for the retail shops, which are still not allotted to the retailers.

“A white paper must be filed to expose the nexus between BMC officials and allottees on the prime BMC properties under the guise of allotment of the same to the project affected people. Several times I had communicated this issue to the BMC officials, including the additional commisioner, Sangita Hansale, but it seems my voice fell on the deaf ears and no action was taken”

When contacted, Hansale said, “The owner, who is running the banquet hall, is project-affected. He was shifted to Borivali BMC building constructed for the retail market from Tagore nagar in Vikroli after the market there was demolished.”  Abhraham raised a few questions included who were the affected people in Borivali, how much space is allotted to them, where are they and why they haven’t been shifted to the market?

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