February 21, 2009 5:07:03 am
At a time when land deals have come down to almost nil,the countrys largest private sector power utility,Tata Power,has taken a prime plot of land at the Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC) on lease at Rs 86.11 crore.
Earlier this month,the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) had decided to sell the 2,500-sq m land next to the Asian Heart Hospital at BKC to Tata Power. The price paid by Tata Power Rs 3.44 lakh per sq m of built-up area is the same as that quoted by Jet Airways in the last commercial deal that took place at BKC in March last year.
According to MMRDA officials,for the past 15 years the plot was rented out to Tata Power on temporary basis for housing an electric substation until the company could find an alternative site. The piece of land was given to Tata Power at a rent of Re 1 per sq m a day,which was increased nominally over the years. Since 2000,we have been insisting that they buy the property by paying the market price like our other lessees but the company preferred to use it on rental basis. We recently decided that it is unfair that they continue to do so unless they go by the procedure and pay up the latest market rate, said additional MMRDA commissioner Milind Mhaiskar. The plot has now been leased out to Tata Power for 80 years.
Despite the MMRDA allowing a floor space index (FSI) of four at BKC (about 10,000-sq m built-up area),the company has purchased an FSI of only one. According to a company spokesperson,the plot has been leased out to meet the growing demands of consumers and will have a receiving station along with basic office space.
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Meanwhile,Jet Airways and Starlight Systems,the highest bidders in March last year for a commercial plot and two residential plots respectively,have still not paid a single instalment to the MMRDA. We have not yet received any response from them despite extending the deadline for payment to March 2009. The deal will stand cancelled and their Rs 10-crore bank guarantee will be forfeited in case they do not pay up by next month, said deputy MMRDA commissioner AR Wankhede.
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