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Adani Group: Adani-led Dharavi Redevelopment Project says “vested interests” looking to derail process

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Adani Group-led special purpose vehicle (SPV) that has been selected to redevelop Asia’s largest slum spread over 600 acres in the heart of Mumbai, the country’s commercial capital, has alleged that “certain vested interests” are looking to derail or delay the urban transformation work.

The assertion comes in the backdrop of the state government’s recent notification to make usage of 40% transferable development rights (TDRs) to be generated from Dharavi redevelopment project mandatory for realty developers for their projects in the city.

The state government holds 20% in the Dharavi Redevelopment Project Pvt Ltd (DRPPL).

In November 2022, Adani Properties, the real estate development company owned by Gautam Adani-led Adani Group, had emerged as the highest bidder to bag the rights to redevelop the slum.

“Generation of TDR within the Dharavi Notified Area (DNA) was permitted since the Government Resolution (GR) of 2018. It was further modified in the GR of 2022. Both these developments happened prior to the issuance of the 2022 tender, which was won through open and fair competition. In the present, all that the government is doing is currently notifying this as a due process,” the Adani Group-led entity said.

Industry experts are of the view that such a mandate with regards to usage of TDR from a specific and single source is likely to push property prices in Mumbai further up.According to the company, the GR issued before the onset of the 2018 tendering process had a provision for the sale of TDR generated from the DRP across Mumbai. The GR introduced in September 2022, before the tendering process commenced, introduced two vital changes.These changes were available for due diligence to all the bidders. Contrary to the claim that these policy changes are going to benefit a single entity, the final notification from the government has, in fact, capped the minimum usage of TDR in other projects at 40% instead of 50%, as mentioned in the September 2022 GR, DRPPL said.

It further added that the government notification of November 7, 2023 also puts a cap on the pricing of TDR. While there was no restriction earlier on the sale price of the TDR generated from the DNA, the government has now restricted the maximum sale price of TDR to be 90% of the ready reckoner rate of receiving plots to avoid any arbitrary pricing of TDR.

“Alleging favouritism of any kind is a mischievous ploy to muddy the waters and divert attention from our goal of transformational urban management,” the company said.

Adani Properties had bid Rs 5,069 crore for the project as against the government’s stipulated minimum investment of Rs 1,600 crore that the lead partner of the special purpose vehicle (SPV) was expected to bring in.

The state government had floated fresh global tenders for the much-delayed project in October 2022. Realty major DLF and Mumbai-based Shree Naman Developers had also bid for the project, while the pre-bid meeting was attended by a total of eight entities including international players.

Following the tendering process, the state government’s Committee of Secretaries had discussed and approved the proposal in a meeting held on December 15, 2022.

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