Your open spaces at stake as Sena, BJP clear policy
In a setback to the decade-long fight by citizens’ groups to save Mumbai’s last open spaces from falling into private hands, the BJP did a U-turn and helped the Shiv Sena push through in the BMC on Wednesday a plan to allow adoption of playgrounds and recreation grounds by private entities.
This new open spaces policy could curb free public access to the city’s 1,068 such plots, which together come to about 1,200 acres. This fear stems from the fate of the nine big plots handed over to private organisations under the earlier caretaker policy that was stayed in 2007, within a year of coming into effect. The nine plots — five are with politicians from ruling allies in the BMC — still remain in private hands and public access to them is severely restricted.
CONTINUED ON P11
RELATED REPORT, P3