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  Metros   Mumbai  02 Aug 2018  Retd judge to probe BMC’s Rs 500 crore loss on city plot

Retd judge to probe BMC’s Rs 500 crore loss on city plot

THE ASIAN AGE.
Published : Aug 2, 2018, 2:21 am IST
Updated : Aug 2, 2018, 2:21 am IST

Shiv Sena group leader Vishakha Raut demanded that the inquiry should be held not by civic officials, but at the hands of retired judge.

Ajoy Mehta
 Ajoy Mehta

Mumbai: In the latest twist to the Jogeshwari plot controversy, the BMC standing committee on Wednesday quashed civic chief Ajoy Mehta’s decision to hold the probe by a top civic official and instead directed the civic body to hold an inquiry at the hands of a retired judge. It also directed to suspend all law and Development Plan (DP) department officials involved in the case till the inquiry is over.

The BMC had failed to acquire the 3.3-acre plot in Jogeshwari for setting up a recreational ground, thereby facing a loss of Rs 500 crore. Subsequently it lost the case in the Bombay high court. Raising the issue in the civic standing committee, BJP group leader Manoj Kotak demanded probe into the matter.

Mr Mehta had asked deputy municipal commissioner Nidhi Chaudhari to probe the matter, but corporators expressed apprehension that she might protect civic officials.

Rais Shaikh from Samajwadi Party said, “Asking the DMC to hold the inquiry would be against natural justice. There is every possibility that she will try to protect officials from her department. The evidences are also likely to be tampered.”

Shiv Sena group leader Vishakha Raut demanded that the inquiry should be held not by civic officials, but at the hands of retired judge.

The plot was reserved for recreational ground in the Development Plan 1991 but since the civic body did not acquire it, the owner sent a purchase notice in May 2014 informing the BMC to acquire it in a year. But the BMC’s failure to acquire the land led to the lapse of the purchase notice and consequently, the reservation on the plot. As the owner refused to hand over the land, the BMC challenged it in the court, but it lost the
case too.

Tags: ajoy mehta, development plan