Happened today: Stalemate removed at Godrej Baug

The seals on the yet to be completed Godrej Baug ownership building were removed by the Bombay Municipal Corporation officials today. Over two years ago, the Municipality had sealed that area due to differences with the Bombay Parsi Punchayet (BPP) over taxes to be paid. Appeasing the Municipality by presenting a cheque for Rs 90 lakhs in end March and another for Rs 40 lakhs in early April, the BPP trustees were relentlessly following up with the Municipal authorities who finally removed the barricades today.

While the Municipal demand for Land Under Construction (LUC) tax was around Rs 50 lakhs per year, after over two years of "bargaining and negotiation, we succeeded in bringing it down by nearly 50%,” stated BPP trustee Kersi Randeria. He felt "due credit should be given to BPP chairman Yazdi Desai who did a fair amount of ground work to get the claim amount reduced.”

The construction work being in abeyance for the last nearly 10 years after nine storeys of the structure had come up, the building that was meant to fill the coffers of the Punchayet could have drained the BPP since the tax was imposed with retrospective effect.

While the BPP may not be able to make immediate headway with the current lockdown in Bombay, work on the project will commence in right earnest by initiating building plans afresh and getting them approved, added Randeria. Parsiana