CRZ relief for Mumbai chawl dwellers

Redevelopment of chawls to be subject to RTI and CAG audit

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Neha Sethi | September 15, 2010



A higher floor space index (FSI) for redevelopment of dilapidated, cessed and unsafe buildings in Mumbai will be allowed under the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) Notification of 2010. “We will allow higher FSI in these areas but under the condition that these projects will be subject to the Right to Information (RTI) Act,” Jairam Ramesh, the minister for environment and forests, said on Wednesday.

 

“These areas are not slums, these are chawls, and they have been there for hundreds of years now. We have a special category for them under CRZ 2010,” he added while speaking at an event in Delhi. Ramesh said that these buildings will further be subject to the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) audit and inspection by a joint monitoring committee constituted by the government of India and Maharashtra government.

The minister said that these conditions were being imposed so that builders don't take control and start evicting tenants. “Since there is a lot of interest in Mumbai, we have a special dispensation for it under CRZ notification,” he added.

Special dispensation for Kerala, Goa, Andaman, Lakshadweep, and a category for critically vulnerable coastal areas like Sunderbans has also been provided in CRZ 2010.

Slum redevelopment in CRZ areas in Mumbai will also be allowed on the condition that the redevelopment will be through a joint venture where the government of Maharashtra has a 51 percent share in the project.

There are around 3,000 dilapidated buildings and around 10 slum areas in Mumbai and around a million people are expected to benefit from this notification, Ramesh added. “Around 35-40 percent of Mumbai area is under CRZ and Mumbai has been given a special status because they have a unique situation,” the minister said.

On the issue of amendments to CRZ 91, Ramesh said, “There is no guarantee that CRZ 2010 will not be amended but by providing windows we have tried to minimise amendments.”

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