BJP and Shiv Sena government in panic over Congress’ promise to provide 500 sq ft houses to slum dwellers: Nirupam

Congress leader Naseem Khan accused Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis of distributing “paper keys” to the slums dwellers residing on Airport land in Chandivali in a political event while Nirupam said that it was a “fraud” to woo voters ahead of the upcoming elections

BJP and Shiv Sena government in panic over Congress’ promise to provide 500 sq ft houses to slum dwellers: Nirupam

During the launch of his political campaign ahead of the Lok Sabha and Maharashtra elections, Congress President Rahul Gandhi on March 1 assured 500 square feet houses to the slum dwellers in Mumbai. 

However, Mumbai Congress President Sanjay Nirupam accused Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of spreading false news regarding Rahul Gandhi’s promise and said that people in the BJP and Shiv Sena government were panicking.

If we can extend the area of the houses under SRA scheme from 161 sq ft to 269, the extension up to 500 sq ft can also be provided by making amendments in the existing rules in the rehabilitation scheme. BJP and Shiv Sena government is spreading rumours that the assurance given by Congress is not feasible. We will soon bring out a viable and full-fledged report on the same,” Mumbai Congress President Sanjay Nirupam added while addressing a press conference. 

Former Union Minister Milind Deora along with the Maharashtra Congress chief Ashok Chavan and some noted ministers who have worked in the government will prepare a feasibility report on the same. 

We aim to provide a dignified life to those residing in slums. This scheme will be designed and planned by the Govt of Maharashtra under the SRA scheme and funded by private builders for the benefit of those residing on slums and old properties,” Nirupam added.

CIDCO land scam

The Mumbai Congress attacked Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis while alleging that the state government has given “lethargic response” in the Kharghar Land scam. Earlier on August 21, 2018, CM Fadnavis had promised a judicial probe into the matter while speaking in the state assembly.

However, Nirupam said that the government has failed to provide a report within the promised time frame. “The CM has said that the report will be released within three months. However, it has been eight months and we are still waiting for the same,” asserted Nirupam. 

After retired Bombay High Court Judge Kishor Rohi denied to conduct the judicial probe owing to his illness, the Maharashtra government appointed another retired Bombay HC Justice RC Chavan. Nirupam informed that the probe has not even started till now saying that Justice Chavan was given an extension of three months starting January 4, 2019. 

In the letter, Nirupam asked CM Fadnavis seeking a response on the queries related to the CIDCO land scam. “Why does the land which belong to CIDCO is still with the Paradise Builders despite being proven that they have acquired the same illegally?” Nirupam asked.

Paper Keys Distributed by CM in a political event: Congress MLA Naseem Khan

Earlier on March 4, in an event, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis distributed the keys to slum dwellers residing on the Airport land in Chandivali. Reacting to this, the Mumbai Congress chief said that the government has not been able to decide the list of slum dwellers who are eligible to reside in these houses but they distributed “paper keys”.

This is a massive fraud by the BJP government and it has distributed not real but paper keys to 8-10 residents ahead of the announcement of Code of Conduct in a rush to woo the voters in the area,” Nirupam asserted. 

While talking to the media, Congress MLA Naseem Khan raised the issue and said that the condition of the buildings for which the “paper keys” were distributed is extremely poor. Khan also claimed that the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Authority (MMRDA) Joint Commissioner had no knowledge of the event being conducted by the CM while the SRA  CEO was sharing a dais with the CM in a political event.

Khan claimed that he wasn’t allowed by the Police administration to protest at the site because it was a political event. Raising questions on the presence of a bureaucrat at the event, Khan said, "The Public service officials who wish to work in the interest of the BJP must leave their posts and join the party. An inquiry committee must be set against them and they must be suspended with immediate effect.”

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