The audit department of the Airports Authority of India (AAI) has objected to the AAI boards decision to give away half of the land it owns at Dahisar, to the recently-formed joint venture company Mumbai International Airport Ltd (MIAL).
The land at Dahisar, a Mumbai suburb, currently houses AAIs Remote Receiving Station and is spread over 64 acres. The decision to transfer the land to MIAL is apparently not in order and violates the norms set for such exercises, the audit department observed. The observations were conveyed to the AAI board last week, said sources close to the development.
The AAI board had cleared the proposal to transfer the land to MIAL at a meeting held on April 27. MIAL said it wanted the land to rehabilitate slum dwellers currently residing near the Chhatrapati Shivaji International airport.
The audit department pointed out that the land be used for the rehabilitation of slumdwellers who have been living on AAIs airport land. The land should not be given away to a private airport company, the department added.
Sources said that the decision to give the land to MIAL seems to have been based on the fact that only few antennas are currently built there and these antennas are old and not in use.
Meanwhile the Bombay High Court also directed the AAI to remove encroachments on the land under question so that AAI could start an expansion programme of the Remote Receiving station. The audit report, making reference to the High Court order, also warned that any move to transfer the land from AAI to a private company, would invite contempt of court proceedings. When contacted, AAI director H S Bains, who is also a member of the MIAL board, said the proposal from MIAL is still under consideration. No final decision has been made so far on the proposal to transfer the land to MIAL, he added.