The Pune Municipal Corporation has decided to change the catgorisation of 11,800 sq metres of land in the bio-diversity park (BDP) in Baner from reserved to residential, and said the piece of land “mistakenly” got reserved in BDP. The PMC’s move comes three years after the development plan for the area was finalised. Municipal Commissioner Saurabh Rao has sought permission from the PMC’s city improvement committee to change the land categorisation.
He said Baner and Balewadi villages were merged in the PMC in 1997, and Baner gaothan was part of the residential zone in the civic body’s Regional Plan that year. But part of the village, located near the forest land, was included in the BDP reservation in the PMC’s development plan.
During the verification process of the land, it was found that some houses, that were earlier under the control of the gram panchayat, were located in the land reserved by PMC in the BDP zone. “So, it is neccessary to dereserve the BDP area and include it in the residential zone. It has also been noticed that the slope of the land in the area doesn’t meet the norms for the BDP zone,” said Rao.
The municipal commissioner said the civic administration should be allowed to start the process of dereserving 11,800 sq metres of the BDP land and changing it to a residential zone, as per the provisions of the Maharashtra Region Town Planning Act.
As many as 23 villages, including Baner, were merged in the PMC in 1997 and development plan of the area was approved in phases, from 2008 to 2015.
The demand to dereserve the area was made by corporators Jyoti Kalamkar and Swapnali Saykar in July last year. They had pointed out that houses in the villages were earlier under the gram panchayat, and it was wrong to reserve them as BDP land.