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So long as the Development Plan shows it as a Nature Park, no other activity can be carried out: Bombay High Court

So long as the Development Plan shows it as a Nature Park, no other activity can be carried out: Bombay High Court

On December 2, the Bombay High Court division bench ruled that the Mahim Nature Park (MNP) cannot be developed as long as it is designated as a "Nature Park" in the Development Plan. "So long as the Development Plan shows it as a Nature Park, no other activity can be carried out."

"The affidavit specifically and succinctly states that Mahim Nature Park (MNP) is excluded from the DRP and same is not going to be developed under the project. MNP is shown as reserved for the Nature park in the Development Plan and there cannot be any other usage so long as the development plan stands. The same certainly cannot be developed for any other purposes" the court said in its order".

The court was hearing the PIL filed by the NGO Vanashakti and activist Zoru Bhathena after the Deputy Collector and Special Land Acquisition officer clarified that the Nature Park was not included in the Dharavi Redevelopment project. Dharavi, Asia's largest slum, has been considered for redevelopment for more than three decades. However, the Adani Group was only recently named the project's highest bidder. According to the petition, the apprehension is supported by the tender notice, which shows Mahim Nature Park (MNP) within the notified boundary of Dharavi Notified Area (DNA), but as an excluded area. Another plan shows MNP within the Dharavi Notified Area boundary, and wrongly characterises the MNP as a 'Recreational Open Space'. The petitioner also asked the court to clarify that the MNP should not be used for calculating Transferable Development Rights and allocating additional land to the developer; however, the court did not find this necessary.

Case Title: Vanashakti and Anr. versus Dharavi Redevelopment Project Slum Rehabilitation Authority and Ors.

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