Mumbai News: Bombay High Court Seeks Clarity From UCNITA Over Lease Renewal For Wilson College Gymkhana

Mumbai News: Bombay High Court Seeks Clarity From UCNITA Over Lease Renewal For Wilson College Gymkhana

Recently, the government decided to lease 1 lakh sq ft of the land to Jain International Organisation to build a gymkhana.

Urvi MahajaniUpdated: Monday, April 08, 2024, 08:38 PM IST
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Wilson College | Wilson College (Website)

The Bombay High Court on Monday asked the United Church of North Indian Trust Association (UCNITA), which manages Wilson College, to show provisions under which it was seeking continuance of the lease of the college gymkhana which has expired. 

Justice Amit Borkar asked UCNITA to show by April 10 the provisions and also precedent judgments. The HC was hearing a plea by UCNITA seeking to re-acquire the over-110-year-old gymkhana on Marine Drive.

The district collector, in the December 2023 order, had decided to take over the gymkhana land citing mismanagement and violation of lease rules. It was upheld by the Maharashtra Revenue Tribunal by an order dated December 5, 2023. 

Bombay HC Examining The Quashing Petition For Wilson College Gymkhana

The petition has sought quashing of the tribunal's order. Their counsels, Prasad Dhakepalkar, Atul Damle and Saket Mone, said they were not given a hearing before the passing of the order.

However, Justice Borkar pointed out the show cause notice issued by the authorities and also that it provides detailed reasoning for not continuing the lease. The judge also asked the petitioner to show if it had submitted any proposal for renewal of the lease. 

Justice Borkar said he was not inclined at this stage to grant any relief, but granted time to petitioners till April 10 to place details on record. 

Legal Challenges And New Developments Surrounding Wilson College Gymkhana

The court also said it will decide later whether to allow the intervention application filed by the Wilson College Alumni Association. Their advocate Rajan Jaykar alleged that the collector’s order was “arbitrary”, and was taken “without following due process of law”. 

Recently, the government decided to lease 1 lakh sq ft of the land to Jain International Organisation to build a gymkhana. 

The college has also announced the appointment of a committee to inquire into the circumstances that led to the loss of its gymkhana. 

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