My letter to Commissioner (planning) to respond to my earlier objections on
the Shastri Park

Subject: Stay order on tender for Temporary Amusement Park advertised by the

Ref: Response to Public Notice  inviting objections/suggestions for the
Change of Use at Shastri Park

Mr. Jain,
I understand that the court has stayed the tender for Temporary Recreation
Park advertised by the DMRC. To my knowledge there were three public notices
dated 16 December 2002 ( change of use on metro land along metro
corridor),17 April 2004 (Master Plan/Zonal Plan modifications) , 18
September 2004 (Change of Land use in the river bed for metro property
development) related to metro corridor development. None of these notices
specifically mentioned this proposal. In case I have missed the   notice for
change of use under section 11A for this proposal, response from the DDA on
my objections/suggestions on the  above mentioned notices is still awaited.

This tender invited private sector involvement for the recreation park on
license basis, while the privatization proposal by the DDA is still awaiting
approval. Basis for private sector involvement prior to the approval by the
Centre is thus not clear. Is it on   some special permission clauses in the
DDA proposal. Since the media reports were incomplete on the DDA proposal,
is it possible to get a copy of the proposal of the DDA on privatization for
greater clarity?

Further, I think planning fraternity needs to resolve some of the issues
raised through this situation amongst themselves. As you would be aware that
this tender is advertised in the name of Sh. K.Srinath, Chief Planner, DMRC,
and the stay has been granted on a petition filed by   planner, Gita Dewan
Verma.  Sh.K.Srinath in a  Seminar on Spatial Planning Reforms in the SPA
(which planners from the DDA also attended), in March 2005, in response to
the question on whether Metro has compromised on procedures, said the
citizens of Delhi will have to make a choice as to whether they want Metro
or they want law.    It is   difficult  while teaching, to explain such
response   by planners in responsible positions in World Class organizations
like the Metro, when these issues are raised by   students. I am sure you
would appreciate as a planner, who is also interested in planning education,
as to why this is    distressing. Your early reply , therefore, to a planner
like myself  will be extremely useful in clarifying these aspects in the
interest of planning education.

Thanks and regards

Poonam Prakash

----- Original Message -----
From: "Gita Dewan Verma" <[email protected]>
To: <[email protected]>
Sent: Wednesday, July 27, 2005 11:25 PM
Subject: [mpisgmedia] High Court Stay on tender for licensing 15 Ha
ofriverbed to private developers

Delhi High Court (HMJ Mukul Mudgal) passed today an
order restraining till next hearing (29/08/05) in WP
6500/2005 DMRC from finalising the bids it has invited
for licensing to private developers at minimum fee of
5 crore 15 Hectares (plus 2.7 Ha for parking) at
Shastri Park on Yamuna riverbed for 15 years for
so-called temporary recreation/entertainment facility.

The application filed on 25/07/05 on which the order
was passed is posted at:
(The petition and previous application are also posted
in the same folder)

All four respondents (DMRC, MoUD, GNCTD and DDA) were
represented in court today. None have filed replies in
the petition on orders of 13/04/05 and 23/05/05. None
had anything of any consequence to say in defence of
the fresh prima-facie illegality or their indifference
to court orders. KG Gopalkrishnan and S Muralidhar won
the stay quite effortlessly.

Apart from the plannerly-legalese on which the
petition (filed on 07/04/05) is based, the tender of
15/07/05 raises serious questions also about
(subsequent) DDA privatisation proposal pending
central government approval, guidelines for PPP in
eco-visitation that MoEF is formulating, the debate
about water (Yamuna flood plains being duly notified
ground water reserve). A joint venture of central and
capital government feels free to pre-empt frameworks
in the making. A utility outfit elevated by PR to
icon-class feels competent to set parameters for
privatisation and eco-visitation in violation of
development and environment law. No less than the
riverbed is sought to be lawlessly licensed for 15
years temporary development to parties that can pay up
at least 5 crores. And capital gods-of-all-things
busily fuss about aesthetics of metro corridors with
no reference to relevant law or related court matters
or Public Notices (to, in effect, demand options
calling for more wilfulness in name of
somehow-compelling metro-property-development).

We are delighted to have won a stay that highlights
this portrait of anomie.

We hope it will be used to raise question about
obviously arbitrary decisions being taken in several
matters and would appreciate information of any such


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