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CM Devendra Fadnavis orders inquiry on Housing Minister Prakash Mehta over SRA

CM Devendra Fadnavis on Monday announced a detailed inquiry into a slum redevelopment project in Tardeo for which Housing Minister Prakash Mehta faces allegations of wrongdoing.

Fadnavis announced the probe into the alleged irregularity in the SRA project at MP Mills compound in Tardeo, in which Mehta had planned to allow more FSI for the construction of a third tower — originally granted to slumdwellers — to project-affected people.

The Congress, NCP-led opposition alleged this could have led to a windfall of nearly Rs 800 crore for the builder. After the CM finished his speech, Mehta offered his own explanation.

“The noting on the file about having informed me was an unintentional flaw by the housing minister. Though he directed the transfer of building rights, there was no final decision taken and I had stopped it,” Fadnavis said, adding that the conditions of the probe will be decided by taking opposition leaders into confidence.

The CM had ordered staying an irregular Slum Rehabilitation Authority proposal at the MP Mills compound, and this is expected to slow down the construction of a third luxury building at Imperial Towers next to Twin tower, officials said.

Initially, the SRA project was allowed to utilise 14,590 sq ft of extra construction rights. After the stay order, it will take longer to access an additional 71,822 sq ft of building rights for the project. The government said that six towers are already constructed.

On June 21, Mehta sanctioned this proposal, although it went against DC rules. SRA officials say that now SD Corporation can only access the additional free-sale construction rights by expanding the tenements of the pending 1,969 slumdwellers. “This will take several years since it took them three years to expand 300 tenements,” an official said.

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