BMC re­acts to HT re­port, will scrap con­struc­tion rule

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - FRONT PAGE - Ku­nal Puro­hit ku­nal.puro­hit@hin­dus­tan­

MUM­BAI: It’s a big vic­tory for the city’s fight to pro­tect open spa­ces. The Bri­han­mum­bai Mu­nic­i­pal Cor­po­ra­tion (BMC), fol­low­ing a re­port in the Hin­dus­tan Times, has de­cided to scrap the much-ex­ploited rule that al­lows con­struc­tion on open spa­ces marked as recre­ation grounds (RG).

Civic chief Ajoy Me­hta promised to scrap a pro­vi­sion in the 1991 de­vel­op­ment con­trol reg­u­la­tions that al­low 15% con­struc­tion on RGs, a day af­ter HT pointed out how BMC had re-des­ig­nated at least a hun­dred open spa­ces as RGs — giv­ing a back-door en­try to pri­vate en­ti­ties tak­ing over th­ese plots to con­struct gymkhanas and ex­clu­sive clubs un­der the new open spa­ces pol­icy.

HT has been con­sis­tently cam­paign­ing against the new pol­icy, along with cit­i­zen groups.

HT’s re­port also pointed out that on BMC’s new ‘des­ig­na­tion sur­vey’ list were iconic spots such as Fort’s Horn­i­man Cir­cle, Azad Maidan, Cross Maidan and Oval Maidan, all of which were tagged RGs even though they have been used as play­grounds and gar­dens for decades.

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