MUMBAI: Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Thursday demanded the resignation of the leader of opposition Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil as he tore apart opposition’s allegations that the land near proposed Navi Mumbai Airport to Koyna dam project affected people (PAP), and that it was sold to a builder even before the PAP getting it. Fadnavis said that there have been more than 200 such cases in previous Congress government's era and said that judicial inquiry would be conducted in all such cases.
While making a statement in the house, Fadnavis gave a point-by-point rebuttal of the charges of favouring a builder. He presented files regarding over 200 similar cases of allotment of land worth Rs 50,000 crore to PAP, cleared by the previous government (Congress-NCP).
The policy in this regard was formed by the previous Congress-NCP government in the state and all governments thereafter have been implementing it for over 15 years," Fadnavis said pointing out that the beneficiary builder in one of the similar cases that were cleared during the tenure of former Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan was the same against whom the allegations are being levelled now.
The leader of opposition in the house Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil had demanded chief minister Fadnavis' resignation and judicial inquiry of the Navi Mumbai land issue while raising the issue in the house earlier in the day.
Referring to that, Fadnavis said that the allegations are completely false and hence the leader of the opposition should resign for levelling wrongful allegations. He clarified that the additional collector has the right to allot land to project affected people and is nothing to do with the chief minister, chief minister's office or even the revenue minister.
"The process of land allotment to project affected people is as per the rules and had happened in the same way in Congress-NCP regime while Prithviraj Chavan was CM. Also, people who got the land had sold it to developers. There are no restrictions on overselling the land. There are over 200 cases in which the land worth at least Rs 50,000 was allotted to PAP and they sold to developers. Project affected people has the right to sell the land which is not violation of rules," Fadnavis said and added - "I would hence demand resignation of the Leader of Opposition for making false allegations against me."
Vikhe-Patil had alleged that 14 acres of land of an estimated value of Rs 1767 crore to a builder at mere RS 3.5 crore by duping Koyna-Dam project affected people.
Chavan along with AICC spokesperson Ranjit Surjewala and Mumbai Congress Chief Sanjay Nirupam had exposed the issue at a press conference in Mumbai on Monday contending that the government had let go 24 acres of prime land worth thousands of crore to a builder at a throwaway amount of a few lakh rupees.
Nirupam, in another press conference on Thursday, also said that a top BJP leader from Delhi too is involved in the suspicious deal, while Chavan welcomed the government decision of judicial inquiry into the case calling it a victory of his party.