Kanjurmarg land dispute: Following the Union government, the Railways and the BMC now claim ownership of portions of the land

by Web Desk | Published: 14 Jun 2022

BMC Elections 2022
The Bombay High Court reserved its decision on Tuesday in the Maharashtra Government's petition challenging the decree granting over 6000 acres of land in suburban Kanjurmarg to a private firm Adarsh Water Parks and Resorts, a portion of which is to be used to build the proposed metro car shed. On Wednesday, Justice AK Menon is expected to issue the order.
The dispute concerns a decree issued by the HC to the private firm in October 2020. However, the state government was only made aware of the decree in March of this year. As a result, it filed an application with the HC challenging the decree and requesting that it be declared illegal.
Aside from that, there is a dispute between the Maharashtra and Union governments over ownership of the said land, on which the former has proposed to build a car shed for its Metro project on approximately 100 acres. The Railways and the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), in addition to the Union government, have filed affidavits claiming ownership and title to a portion of the land at Kanjur Village. The state and federal governments, as well as the BMC and the railways, have all claimed that the private parties cheated the court and obtained the decree in their favour.
According to an affidavit filed with the Railways by Mohammed Afaque, divisional engineer (land management), the land  measuring 0.9 hectares or 9,256 square metres has the name of Central Railway as owner in 7/12 extracts. The Railways has requested that the parties in the suit refrain from acting in furtherance of the consent terms until a decision on the government's application is made. Furthermore, the parties must be directed to disclose their actions, such as the signing of deeds, documents, and papers, as well as whether they have created any encumbrances, mortgages, or third-party rights.
"The said consent terms being a fraud upon this Hon'ble court amount to an abuse of the process of this court and the parties to the said suit should be dealt with the strictest manner including the issuance of contempt of court proceedings and exemplary cost should be imposed upon the parties to the suit," the Railway's affidavit continues.
The BMC has also filed an affidavit stating that it owns a portion of the land in Kanjur village and that the private parties have "suppressed material facts" or have "attempted to mislead the court and have approached the court with unclean hands." According to the BMC affidavit filed by PU Vaidya, executive engineer in the Development Plan Department, they withheld "vital and relevant material" in order to gain an advantage and "try to usurp the land." According to the corporation, it was given over 141 hectares of land to use as a dumping ground by the Supreme Court.
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