Housing Scheme : Flats for MLAs not free, to cost ₹70 lakh

Mumbai After widespread criticism over the announcement of flats in Goregaon for lawmakers, the state government said that the flats will not be free and will cost ₹70 lakh. It added that only legislators who don’t already own a house will be allotted flats.

“This is not being done for the first time. The state government has allotted more than 1,200 plots in Mumbai for the housing of various sections of the society including artists, journalists, bureaucrats and legislators. Huge plots were allotted for the housing schemes of Mathadi and textile market workers in the past,” said housing minister Jitendra Awhad on Friday.

Flats for MLAs not free, to cost ₹70 lakh

Deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar said that the flats would be given to the legislators who do not have any house registered on his/her or their spouse’s name.

In a tweet in Marathi on Friday morning, Awhad said, “There is a lot of uproar over the flats announced for the legislators. But let me clarify, the flats will cost around ₹70 lakh, including the cost of land and the construction cost. They will have to bear the cost.”

Awhad on Thursday had announced that 300 flats are being built in Goregaon on a plot owned by Mhada for the legislators elected from outside Mumbai Metropolitan Region. He said that the plot has been identified and the Mhada will take the responsibility of the construction with High Income Group flats.

According to the officials from the housing department, the design of the flats has not been finalised as yet. “We have finalised the plot in Goregaon though other details are yet to be worked out. However, the carpet area will range between 600 and 900 sqft,” he said and added that the market price of the two-bhks, measuring around 650 satta in private buildings in Goregaon, cost over ₹1.25 crore.

Meanwhile, some of the MLAs have opposed the idea. Maharashtra Navnirman Sena’s sole MLA Raju Patil said, “Why should MLAs be given flats by the government. The state should utilise the money to give free electricity up to 200 units to the poor,” he said.

Congress MLA Praniti Shinde said, “The government should utilise the funds to set up facilities for the treatment of the people coming to Mumbai from rural areas.”

Social activist Heramb Kulkarni said, “According to the report by Association for Democratic Reforms, 264 or 93% of total 288 MLAs in the incumbent Assembly have assets worth more than ₹1 crore, while 180 of them have declared their assets to be more than ₹5 crore. The MLAs get hostel facilities to stay in Mumbai, despite which they are being given the flats. This is surprising in the light of the rising number of footpath dwellers in the state. Instead of providing them the roof over their head, the government is taking care of its MLAs who already have their own houses.”

State council Chairman Ramraje Naik Nimbhalkar said that even CIDCO is ready with a housing scheme in Navi Mumbai. “There are 300 houses. They are for legislators, judges and IAS officers,” said Nimbhalkar. He also directed the government that it should work out if legislators can get houses in the revamp of Worli colony, which housed former legislators.

Source: https://www.hindustantimes.com/cities/mumbai-news/flats-for-mlas-not-free-to-cost-70-lakh-minister-101648227456998.html

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