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Did Hrithik, Rakesh Roshan’s Khandala plot eat into land meant for burial?

RTI query filed by former Congress president leads to question marks over the legality of Roshan land deal.

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Our Correspondent

A plot measuring 15,000 sq ft purchased by Rakesh and Hrithik Roshan in December last year has come under scrutiny. The Roshans are being accused of allegedly usurping some additional portions surrounding their land, including one used for burials, according to a report by Mumbai Mirror.

Kiran Gaikwad, former Congress president of Khandala, filed the RTI query, and the finding suggests that there could have been some illegalities involved in the plot sale. The Roshans had purchased the plot for Rs30 crore through one of their companies – Sundar Bhawar Holiday Homes Pvt Ltd on 19th December last year.

“One of the plots - survey number 181B, Maval Taluka, measuring 504 sq mt - belonged to the state government, while another plot, survey number 182, was marked for a burial ground," Gaikwad told Mumbai Mirror.  Apparently, both the plots are said to belong to the Roshans. "I accessed all documents pertaining to the plots in and around the one recently bought by Sunder Bhawar Holiday Homes, and was stunned to find that two government plots have been usurped by the company while demarcating and getting a boundary wall sanctioned around their area,” added Gaikwad

Gaikwad has complained to the Lonavala Muncipal Council to take back the two plots from the Roshans. Gaikwad further alleged that a balwadi (pre-school for economically weaker section) and a couple of shrines that stood on the government plot have been hurriedly demolished.

While the Roshan have so far maintained a stoic silence on the matter, Shakir Shaikh, an official spokesperson of the project on the site, has denied any wrongdoing in the deal on the part of the Roshans.

 "We completed the legal formalities and started building the compound wall. There has been no violation. If government plots were merged with ours, why didn't the authority claim it? There was a mention of open space reservation but it belongs to our client,” said Shaikh.

Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis is due to visit Khandala soon and Gaekwad intends to take the matter to him. The Roshans’ proposal to build a compound wall was approved by the Lonavala Municipal Council in February this year. The Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation had issued a No Objection Certificate (NOC) for the construction in April this year.