Citizens for Area Sabha, a citizen’s body, has also started an online petition addressed to chief minister Uddhav Thackeray against the proposal to handover more than 116 amenity spaces for private development. The petition has already received over 3,500 signatures.
Nitin Memane, president of Kharadi Residents Association, said objections from citizens’ forums of Kharadi, Baner, Pashan, Wanowrie, Sopanbaug and others, were handed to the Pune municipal commissioner on Monday. “Some of us later met the commissioner but he was only trying to counter our objections and asked why we were against the proposal. We have clarified that we do not want any sale or lease of the amenity land to private parties and want the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) to develop the amenities,” Memane explained.
Vaishali Patkar, from Citizens for Area Sabha, said, “Based on media reports and the response to an Right To Information application we filed, we found out that over 116 amenity spaces in different parts of the city have been shortlisted for the proposal. We want to know who initiated this proposal to sell such prime real estate, why were citizens not included in the decision making and why PMC has not developed reservations as per the Development Plan (DP). We are compiling all the information we have collected to make a document to prevent handing over of the land to builders.”
Speaking on the issue, head of PMC’s estate department Rajendra Muthe stated that the proposal is at a nascent stage. “We have only mooted the idea now. We also want to make it clear that the said amenity spaces will be developed as per reservations for the land in the DP. If the DP states a garden or school must be developed at a particular space, it will be developed but with private partnership. The land will not be used to construct residential or commercial complexes,” Muthe clarified.