The erstwhile government had promised Dharavi residents 300 sq.ft houses and as per that the DRA had prepared a detailed architectural plan for 260 hectares of Dharavi locality.
It seems Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis will have to junk his promise to Dharavi residents, offering bigger houses of 400 sq.ft against the existing 300 sq.ft. For, the Dharavi Redevelopment Authority (DRA) has termed 400 sq.ft houses unfeasible, thanks to restriction on height and non-use of transfer of development right (TDR).The erstwhile government had promised Dharavi residents 300 sq.ft houses and as per that the DRA had prepared a detailed architectural plan for 260 hectares of Dharavi locality. As part of it, the pilot project has been also started. “Since 2006, we have constructed almost 9,000 housing units in Dharavi. But there was always dilly-dallying on part of the government and no clear guidelines on the number of houses to be constructed and the time period. So, we too had to accept a wait-and-watch policy,” said a senior government official, requesting anonymity.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>He further said the guidelines permit only 21-storeyed towers. “For providing 400 sq.ft houses as promised by CM Fadnavis, we need to either have more land – an option already ruled out – or we need to increase the tower height. However, the civil aviation rules do not allow more than 21 floors,” the official said.”The buildings should then be 32-storeyed, for which we need civil aviation ministry permission. Moreover, we need to amend the development control rules (DCR), which again will be time consuming,” pointed out another official adding that these steps “would virtually put the Dharavi redevelopment project on hold for an uncertain period.””We have already informed the CM and made him aware about these intricacies and nitty-gritty. We are ready with a plan based on the prevailing rules. The e-tendering for this project will be done any moment once we get a nod from the CM’s office,” he said requesting anonymity.According to a political observer, Dharavi is a solid case on how an ambitious redevelopment project can be spoiled due to the greediness of the residents and tall promises of politicians. “If the BJP had not made the tall promise during the assembly elections, this project would not have halted. ‘Politics’ in development is making people and city suffer, with no development taking place,” he said.