Bhu­jbals lived in posh San­tacruz home, real own­ers locked out

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - FRONT PAGE - Ke­taki Ghoge ke­taki.ghoge@hin­dus­tan­times.com

MUM­BAI: Amid al­le­ga­tions of amass­ing a multi-crore em­pire span­ning mines in In­done­sia, sugar mills in Nasik and real es­tate com­pa­nies, now for­mer pub­lic works min­is­ter Ch­ha­gan Bhu­jbal and his fam­ily face ac­cu­sa­tions in a land grab case, which left the real own­ers, a Catholic fam­ily from San­tacruz, locked out of their home and de­nied of its own­er­ship for more than a decade.

For the past three years, Bhu­jbal’s fam­ily, in­clud­ing his son Pankaj and nephew Sameer, was stay­ing in the nine-storey Soli­taire build­ing in San­tacruz (West), built on a plot that did not be­long to them. It was built af­ter the de­mo­li­tion of the bun­ga­low La Pe­tite Fleur or The Lit­tle Flower, be­long­ing to Fran­cis Fer­nan­des and his heirs. The prop­erty card of the plot con­tin­ues to be in the name of the late Fer­nan­des and his el­dest daugh­ter. For the plot, all the fam­ily has got so far is a cheque for Rs1 lakh that they claim is yet to be cashed. How did Parvesh Con­struc­tions — Sameer and Pankaj were di­rec­tors — get this prime plot? The an­swer is a clas­sic story of land sharks, mid­dle­men and those in power bend­ing rules to grab realty in Mum­bai.

CON­TIN­UED ON P10

...with re­gards to this prop­erty, le­gal pro­cesses, per­mis­sions were pend­ing. We had ev­ery in­ten­tion to give own­ers their due.

PANKAJ BHU­JBAL, MLA

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