Mumbai: BDD Chwals' residents still confused over govt's dream project of redevelopment

Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis on Saturday launched redevelopment project of BDD Chwals where govt is planning to build 16000 affordable houses along with apartments. However, people are confused that they have not received any concrete plan of the redevelopment.

Chetan Shinde, is a young professional, who is staying in BDD since his birth. His 4-yr-old son represents 4th generation of BDD Chwals. From past many years, Chetan was tensed as their 130 sq ft house is not enough to accommodate their 5-6 family members. But, Saturday was one of the best days of his life as state govt launched its ambitious redevelopment project for Mumbai city -- that's 'redevelopment of BDD Chwals.'

"I am happy that we are getting our home of 400-500 sq ft. Now days, home prices have touched sky and it has become difficult to buy home. Somehow, we managed in small house in joint family, but I am happy that at least my children will spend their life in bigger house," said Chetan Shinde, a resident of Worli BDD Chawl.

BDD stands for Bombay Development Department. These Chwals, where thousands of families are staying, were actually jail in British era. But in 1924, these jail building were converted into housing apartments for economically weaker people. Since then, till today they were never redeveloped. By launching the big redevelopment plan, Fadnavis govt had announced that BDD residents will get their own house at the same place where they are staying now, but these residents are still confused as they have not received any concrete plan or agreement. They feel it must be some election gimmick of this govt.

Though, govt has huge plan of redevelopment, but few groups are opposing it, citing reason of possible corruption. Dr Raju Waghmare, is one of such person, who moved court against govt over redevelopment of BDD issue.

"Maximum BDD residents are poor working class people. Now, they are paying only Rs 17 to Rs 20 as rent per month to LEAD govt. Once these buildings get redeveloped, they will have to shell out Rs 19000 to Rs 20000 per annum. From where they are going to get that much money? What arrangements govt has made of corpus fund for them? Why MHADA and not other authority has been appointed incharge to look after this project," questions Waghmare, a BDD resident of Naigaon.

Tushar Jadhav is also opposing this redevelopment plan. He feared he and his family may have to stay in Transit camps till the completion of this huge project, and if it didn't get complete, then they many not even get their original home back and again it will be a long wait for them to get this project complete.

"I am afraid if this project doesn't get complete in time, then we will have to stay in transit CPA for long and again have to wait for long time to get our houses back. That would be very worst situation. Authorities should speak to us clearly and give us in writing everything," said Jadhav, a Naigaon BDD resident.

Naigaon, Worli, NM Joshi all these BDD Chawls are at the prime location of Mumbai city. By redeveloping these BDD govt is going to get huge revenue after selling the commercial apartments which will get constructed here along with apartments for BDD Residents. Authorities will redeveloped the total 92 acres of land spread across Mumbai and planning to sell these affordable houses via lottery scheme which will be having EWS (Economically Weaker Section), LIG (Low income Grp) ,MIG (Middle income Grp) & HIG (Higher income group).

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Redevept of chawls will raise standard of living of people: CM