Congress backs irked residents of 'preserved areas' in Mumbai

Tuesday, 3 December 2013 - 12:01pm IST | Place: Mumbai | Agency: DNA

After the Shiv Sena and MNS opposed the inclusion of Shivaji Park on the heritage list, it was the Congress’ turn to back residents of Dadar and Matunga.

While most parts of Matunga have been put on the ‘heritage’ list, Five Gardens and buildings around it, King’s Circle and couple of buildings in Sewri are also in the line of being tagged as ‘structures of heritage importance’. The residents are wary of not being able to redevelop their buildings.

The Congress leaders held a meeting on Monday of the residents of Dadar Parsi Colony and Matunga’s Hindu Colony, opposing its inclusion on the heritage list.  The residents alleged that people having vested interests are behind the move. “It seems to be a conspiracy by vested interests. We were surprised to see that our homes were in the same list as the Gateway of India and the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus. The heritage list should be reviewed,” said Shanti Rajamani, a resident of Ambedkar Road.

Local legislator Kalidas Kolambkar said the area cannot be included on the heritage list. “There are old buildings and can collapse anytime. We can’t have a repeat of the Dockyard Road collapse,” said Kolambkar, adding that he would resign if it area is declared as a heritage precinct.

Rajya Sabha MP and Congress leader Bhalchandra Mungekar said many buildings are not fit to live in. “They are in need of urgent repairs. Everything old is not heritage,” Mungekar said.

He added that he would take up the matter with the municipal commissioner and the chief minister.

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