Desai has asked the collector to release funds for the flagpole and secondly, he has asked the BMC to construct and maintain the structure.
Mumbai: Shiv Sena leader and state minister Subhash Desai’s plan to have a 150-foot-tall flagpole at the Gateway of India has cleared all but two obstacles which may not be very easy to surmount. Firstly, Mr Desai has asked the collector to release funds for the flagpole and secondly, he has asked the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to construct and maintain the structure.
A senior official taking care of the project said, “The proposal is to have a replica of the flagpole currently present at Raj Bhavan. Mr Desai has asked the collector to release funds for the flagpole and then asked the BMC to construct it and take care of it in future.”
The official said except for two permissions — one from the Heritage Committee and the other from the commissioner — all other permissions including those from the Bombay Port Trust (BPT), police and Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) had been received. The official revealed that though he had made a thorough presentation to the Heritage Committee on Tuesday, the committee’s response was not very positive.
“The Gateway of India is on BPT land and all these permissions are in place. However, the Heritage Committee did not seem too positive,” said the official. The approximate cost of the flagpole is pegged at `12 lakh which Mr Desai has pledged from his MLA fund. Even if the Heritage Committee passes the proposal, it will go to the municipal commissioner and it will be up to him to give a go ahead or not. There are two other tall flagpoles in Mumbai — one at the Bandra end of the Bandra-Worli Sea Link (BWSL) and the other at the airport.
Tall flagpoles are sought after in that they can keep the flag hoisted even at night.