EVEN AS the Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority (MHADA) on Wednesday reserved Rs 5 crore token money for buying private land in the city, it rejected the plan of purchasing land in Borivali, offered by a private land owner, to build affordable houses. Sources in MHADA said the authority will instead focus of creating housing stock on the land it owns.
The MHADA on Wednesday proposed a budget of around Rs 8,000 crore for 2019-20. It allocated Rs 500 crore for maintenance of 56 MHADA colonies and reserved a token amount of Rs 5 crore for purchase of land.
In a meeting on Monday, MHADA members had proposed Rs 100 crore for purchase of land. The amount was revised to Rs 5 crore on Wednesday, following which, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis cleared the MHADA budget.
Deependra Singh Kushwaha, Chief Officer of MHADA’s Mumbai board, said that details of the budget will be announced on Thursday. “We have received a proposal for the purchase of a 7-acre plot in Borivali. But purchasing the plot in not viable,” he added. He further said the MHADA’s main focus is on its own land which, he said, would be enough for creating a huge housing stock. In future, if the authority needs to purchase land in the city, it has reserved a token amount of Rs 5 crore for the purpose, added Kushwaha.
A senior official said: “We only lack homes in the Mumbai board region, where the demand is high.” He added that the Mumbai board is likely to hold a lottery of 217 homes — lowest in the history of the board — later this month and advertisements inviting applications for the same will be issued before March 10. The results will be declared in May.
The official said that to overcome the shortage of land, the MHADA had asked its divisional engineers in January to identify plots in their areas where houses can be constructed.
Sources said that the engineers have identified around 20 such plots in south Mumbai and suburbs.
“This is why MHADA rejected the plan of purchasing land in Borivali,” said a source.