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  Metros   Mumbai  30 Dec 2017  Kamala Mill land dvpt unplanned and faulty, claim activists

Kamala Mill land dvpt unplanned and faulty, claim activists

THE ASIAN AGE. | SHRUTI GANAPATYE
Published : Dec 30, 2017, 6:22 am IST
Updated : Dec 30, 2017, 6:49 am IST

The tragedy showed that the development model on the mill land failed completely, a mill workers union said.

If the area has 50 hotels and they are getting good response then it’s a natural growth.
 If the area has 50 hotels and they are getting good response then it’s a natural growth.

Mumbai: Activists and experts have blamed the Kamala Mills compound fire tragedy, which claimed 14 lives on Friday, to the government’s faulty policies and absence of planning in the newly developed area. This is the second tragedy after the Elphinstone stampede that has occurred in central Mumbai. After the closure of the mills, the land was meant to be used for low cost housing, civic amenities and commercial use on equal proportion. However, by changing the Development Control (DC) rules to benefit mill owners, the government gave a major chunk of the land away for commercial use without keeping any control over the development.  

The tragedy showed that the development model on the mill land failed completely, a mill workers union said. “Out of the total land, one-third was for the owner and one-third each for the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) and the Maharashtra Housing And Development Authority (Mhada). The DC rules later changed and the civic authorities got one-third of the open space in the mill structure. However, the owners benefited from the major land chunk that they used for commercial purpose. The mill workers were wiped out, they lost their jobs due to closure of the mills and the new jobs created were in the unorganized sector,” said Uday Bhat, from the trade union.

Architect and urban planner, Pankaj Joshi said that growth in certain areas is inevitable but the government should plan it and enforce stringent rules for safety. “Splinter urbanisation is inevitable and you cannot stop it. If the area has 50 hotels and they are getting good response then it’s a natural growth. But the government can plan it and enforce rules for the hotels or any other building for the safety of the people,” Mr Joshi said. He even raised the point that the government needs to check if fire related accidents and deaths are more in the city compared to other metropolis.

Tags: development control rule, mhada, metropolis