Mumbai Metro carshed: We completed BJP’s unfinished task, says Congress

Sawant said that the Centre’s Salt Department which is now staking claim over the land through the DPIIT, could not provide proof of it.
Mumbai Metro Rail Card
Mumbai Metro Rail Card

Mumbai: Reiterating that the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party was “misleading” the people, Maharahstra’s ruling coalition partner Congress on Friday claimed that by shifting the Mumbai Metro carshed from Aarey Colony to Kanjurmarg, it was merely completing the “unfinished” task of the previous BJP regime.

Targeting the BJP in the Centre and the state, Congress spokesperson Sachin Sawant claimed that the erstwhile BJP-led state government had planned to shift the metro project to Kanjurmarg as the land there belonged to the state government.

“At that time, there was no dispute over the land title, but now the BJP-led Central government is claiming ownership over the 102-acre plot. The government, headed by (then) Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has misled the people of the state on this issue, which is shocking and condemnable,” he told media persons.

A major row erupted between the Centre and the state after the Union Department of Promotion of Industry & Internal Trade (DPIIT) wrote to the state government opposing its move to relocate the carshed project at Kanjurmarg, arguing it would be “against the interest of the Government of India”, and claimed ownership over the land.

The Centre’s missive came in wake of Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on October 11 announcing the shifting of the carshed for Metro-III from Aarey Colony to Kanjurmarg.

The state government not only slammed the Centre’s letter, but also declared it would go ahead with the project in Kanjurmarg. It also accused the Centre of making attempts to “sabotage” the project.

Sawant said that the Centre’s Salt Department which is now staking claim over the land through the DPIIT, could not provide proof of it.

“The relevant orders were given by the Mumbai Suburban District (MSD) Collector in 2014, the Divisional Commissioner in 2015 and even by (then BJP) Revenue Minister Chandrakant Patil in 2018. Besides, in the plan submitted by the administration in 2015, it was clearly written that there is no dispute over this 102-acre land,”he said.

Claiming that it was the Fadnavis government which wanted the car shed of Metro-III to be located at Kanjurmarg, Sawant said that the formal decision on the plan was taken by the current MVA government.

On September 22, 2015, senior bureaucrat Ashwini Bhide had written to the MSD Collector seeking land in Kanjurmarg for Metro Car depot and other works, he claimed.

Sawant added that a state government expert committee in March 2015 recommended that the main depot of Metro III should be connected with the Metro VI in Kanjurmarg, proving that Kanjurmarg was an important location and was in the plan.

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