Sonia Gandhi, Jairam Ramesh Were Against Lavasa Township: Ajit Gulabchand

| Updated: January 18, 2023 3:26 pm

A seasoned Davos member and the Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) of Hindustan Construction Company (HCC) Ajit Gulabchand claimed on January 17 that Congress leaders Sonia Gandhi and Jairam Ramesh are to blame for the closure of Lavasa township, which was previously under his company’s control.

“Some politicians like Sonia Gandhi and Jairam Ramesh thought that it is not a good idea. They wrongfully attacked it, and therefore, it got into difficulty,” he said on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos.

He anticipated that the administration of Prime Minister Narendra Modi will “take a fresh look at it.” “I would request the Modi government to take a fresh look at it. You have promoted the area of smart cities, looked at the idea of urban India… projects like these will (help you) get models, different methods of creating smart cities, and this is what I would like it to happen one day,” Gulabchand said.

A joint venture between HCC (68.7%), Avantha Group (17.18%), Venkateshwara Hatcheries (7.81%), and Vithal Maniar established Lavasa City by Lavasa Corporation (6.29 percent). Three lakh people were expected to live in the township.

Apartments, villas, and hotels were all planned as part of the project. After the environment ministry ordered a stop to construction on the project in 2010, it went into default on bank debts. The Ajit Gulabchand-led Hindustan Construction Company founded the business in 2000.

His plan was to create the first privately-ideas city in the country on 20,000 acres in the Mulshi and Velhe regions of the Pune district of Maharashtra. He said that is not a real estate project, but a city where municipal services would have been charged. “Real estate is one part of it.”

When asked which project he was most proud of, he responded that the business has completed many, including the largest nuclear power plant in Asia at Kudankulam, but that the Bandra-Worli Sea Link in Mumbai had become one of the nation’s favourites since it “is most visible.”  

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