Pune: Farmers Accuse PMRDA Of Unfair Treatment In Manjari Khurd-Kolwadi Town Planning Scheme

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Manjari Khurd, 18th February 2023: Pune Metropolitan Area Development Authority (PMRDA) has recently submitted the Manjari Khurd-Kolwadi (Haveli taluka) Town Planning Scheme No. 11 to the Maharashtra State Government for final approval.

However, 140 farmers, including 35 affected beneficiaries of the scheme, have raised concerns about the plan, alleging that their written and oral complaints were ignored by the Urban Development Administration and the arbitrator.

They claim that the plan lacks proper planning, contains oppressive conditions, and fails to address the accommodation and livelihood needs of most farmers. Many farmers have also been treated unfairly in the final allotment of plots.

The farmers allege that the administration has cheated them by saying that the scheme is favorable to farmers and will be implemented in their best interest. The farmers also claim that only 48.87% of plots have been allotted to farmers instead of the promised 50%, and that more than 35% of the area is owned by PMRDA itself. Additionally, strategic plots have been allocated based on political pressure, and nearby farmers have been favored.

The PMRDA map originally proposed a ring road of 110 meters in the area, but the new revised map has reduced it to 65 meters, resulting in a loss of 11.65 acres of land for the farmers. The area announced in the scheme is 556 acres, but it is actually 560 acres, with PMRDA keeping the remaining four-acre area. While 50% of the 556 acres were required to be allocated to farmers, only 273 acres have been allotted, with the remaining five-acre area kept by PMRDA.

The farmers have demanded that 60% of the total area to be acquired for the scheme should be given to farmers. They have also asked that residential houses and areas be excluded from the plan, scattered areas should be consolidated, and amenity space should be created by acquiring lands near the defence department to avoid loss for farmers. Furthermore, the farmers have requested that plots given to some farmers on the channel of Hindustan Petroleum Company Limited (HPCL) passing through the area be shifted to other convenient places.

“The administration should not impose the scheme on the farmers unfairly, and coordination between farmers and administration should be restructured to ensure that injustice is not done to the farmers. Although farmers and landowners are positive about the scheme, it needs to be organized properly”, states letters from the farmers to the Chief Minister and the Commissioner of PMRDA.

According to Ramdas Jagtap, Deputy Collector of PMRDAm over the course of two months, the town planning scheme (TP) has been developed with input from farmers and stakeholders. However, recent letters suggest that there is still confusion and dissatisfaction among the farmers. In response, a meeting has been scheduled for Tuesday (21st February) by the commissioner in order to address these concerns and find a path forward.


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