Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal
Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal
File Photo: ANI

The Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Friday condemned the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) acquiring a 20,000 sq m plot at Eksar in Mumbai's Borivali for "over 6 times its valuation". The party called it "whole sale corruption" and defiantly criticised the BMC's move.

In a strongly-worded press release, AAP said, "As of 2011, it's valuation was ₹54 Crores and now the plot has been acquired at ₹349 Crores. Moreover, the plot has a reservation of a playground and a maternity home, it has encroachments and was the basis of rejection of the acquisition proposal as late as 2019, by the then BMC Commissioner, Mr Praveen Pardeshi. It has singularly benefited a private entity- Nishalp LLP."

Dubbing it as 'whole sale corruption', AAP said that no matter what the BMC does, "Mumbaikars always lose".

"Why is the BMC bending over backwards to particularly favour Nishalp LLP? What justifies the six times exponential jump in the price for acquisition of the plot? Why was the plot acquired despite encroachments?" the release stated.

The party further stated that this raises 'serious questions' about the status of plot reservations as per DP 2034.

"Moreover, as per BMC's own admission, only 17% of the previous DP was implemented rendering the entire plot reservation exercise futile," AAP held in its release, adding that Mumbai is increasingly becoming unlivable as it is witnessing a struggle for amenities like open spaces, health care facilities, public toilets and other public utilities, while precious land and opportunity is being squandered away.

"We demand a non-BMC independent enquiry and the entire Eksar transaction to be put on hold, till then. Mumbaikars have in the past, ensured that BMC withdraws Crawford Market redevelopment, which also reeked of corruption. Eksar is BMC's Crawford Market-2 and AAP is committed to ensure that Mumbaikars prevail", the release quoted AAP leader Preeti Sharma Menon as saying.

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Free Press Journal