The BMC also stated that as per the Development Plan 1991, the land had been reserved for the zoo.
Mumbai: The Bombay high court on Thursday dismissed a petition filed by Mafatlal Industries, seeking grant of compensation in lieu of the land that the state government had reserved for expansion of the city zoo.
A bench of Justices S.C. Dharamadhikari and Bharati Dangre dismissed the plea where Mafatlal Industries claimed that it was the rightful leaseholder of the said plot and thus, deserved to be compensated for the land. The dispute pertains to a 58,000 square metre plot adjoining the Veermata Jijabai Udyan Zoo at Byculla in the city. The land had been given on lease to Mafatlal Industries for 100 years. According to BMC counsel Anil Sakhre, the lease ended between 2012 and 2018. The BMC also stated that as per the Development Plan 1991, the land had been reserved for the zoo.
Mafatlal Industries however approached the high court last year, challenging the BMC’s decision to take over the land and demanded compensation of Rs 1,600 crore in lieu of it. It claimed that while its lease for part of the plot had expired in 2012, and for the remaining part in 2018, as per a state government resolution (GR) of 2004, it could still claim rights over the land for an additional 30 years.
Mafatlal claimed that the GR permitted it to commercially exploit 50 per cent of the said land for another 30 years and thus, it was still the rightful leaseholder. However, the BMC pointed out that Mafatlal was claiming a right to perpetual lease holding without drawing up a new lease.