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Aaditya Thackeray pulls a Rahul Gandhi, hails the dangerous politician-builder nexus of Maharashtra in recent faux pass: What he said

Speaking at the Real Estate Forum of the National Real Estate Development Council (NAREDCO), Aaditya Thackeray claimed that politicians and developers sell common things such as hopes and dreams, and there is always a politician-builder nexus, but it should be seen positively.

On Thursday, Shiv Sena prince and Maharashtra Minister Aditya Thackeray gave a controversial statement defending the rampant politician-builder nexus in the state, saying that one should see it ‘positively’.

Speaking at the Real Estate Forum of the National Real Estate Development Council (NAREDCO), Aaditya Thackeray claimed that politicians and developers sell common things such as hopes and dreams, and there is always a politician-builder nexus, but it should be seen ‘positively’.

The junior Thackeray defended his statement saying that the MVA government in Maharashtra has been able to reduce stamp duty and premiums only because of this nexus.

“Politicians and developers sell common things. We both sell hopes and dreams,” Aaditya Thackeray said.

Aaditya Thackeray also said that when something goes wrong, the media blames the builder-politician nexus but it is the government that has revived the real estate industry.

“We invite you to work with the government. Politicians and developers sell common things. We both sell hopes and dreams. The basic hope of people is to have their own house,” he said.

He also spoke about the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) clearances for projects and said that he aimed to digitalise the process so that builders do not have to line up outside a minister’s office. The minister also asked developers to build a better city.

The normalisation of the political-builder nexus by Sena prince Aaditya Thackeray, especially with Maharashtra being one of the epicentres of multiple real estate scams and criminal cases in the country, has evoked a strong response among the citizens.

It is notable here that it is usually the other prince of dynasty politics, Rahul Gandhi, who makes headlines for his controversial statements exposing his own party. Rahul Gandhi has in the past made statements in the hope to attack the BJP that were actually self goals of the Congress party’s own failures.

Political-Builder nexus in Maharashtra

The builder-political nexus has become a significant menace to the development of real estate and infrastructure in the country. The politicians, bureaucrats, big builders and the land mafia often control the real estate market.

The politicians accumulate resources using corrupt means during their term in office and route the funds towards real estate to avoid public scrutiny. The builders invest the politicians’ money to develop the real estate and re-route it back to the political class during elections in the form of illegal election funding.

This nexus between the political-builder class has not only created artificial scarcity of land but also has pushed out genuine buyers from buying affordable homes in major cities.

Maharashtra is known to have a notorious politician-builders nexus, which is centred around the financial capital of Mumbai. Maharashtra’s rich politicians have found their way into the real estate, making property developers their perfect partners.

Reportedly, land scams were so common in Maharashtra during the chief ministership of Sharad Pawar as he would de-reserve prime plots for certain beneficiaries. During his tenure as Chief Minister, he had converted the Vasai-Virar green belt into a residential zone, by which thousands of acres of land were illegally freed for housing.

Shiv Sena leader Manohar Joshi, who was the chief minister from 1995-to 1999, lost his job after the court had ruled that he had favoured his son-in-law, a builder, to construct a township in Pune. The next biggest scandal was Adarsh Housing, in which Congress politicians, including Chief Minister Ashok Chavan, had acquired apartments for themselves and their family members when the land was actually approved for Kargil war widows.

Recently, in 2019, the NCP leader Praful Patel was accused of carrying out real estate deals with gangster Dawood Ibrahim and his associates. Patel had allegedly cultivated close ties with the underworld and the builder mafia in Maharashtra. The ED had accused Patel of colluding with gangster Iqbal Mirchi, who had transferred two floors in Mumbai’s Ceejay House to the gangster.

Recently, the ED had attached properties worth Rs 11.5 crores of Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut for alleged involvement in the 1034 crore Patra Chawl FSI fraud case.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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