New Delhi, Nov 8 (UNI) The Communist Party of India (CPI) has appealed to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to withdraw the Maharashtra government's decision to repeal the Urban Land Ceiling and Regulation Act, 1976 as it would have ''serious repurcussions'' on the people of the state.
CPI General Secretary A B Bardhan in a two-paged letter to the Prime Minister pointed out that the housing problem in Mumbai had already reached ''menacing proportions'' and several thousand acres belonging to 345 land owners were available to the state government under the Urban Land Ceiling and Regulation Act, 1976.
The Maharashtra government had filed an affidavit in the Mumbai High Court saying it had so far obtained 1221 acres of land and had also appointed officials to acquire 16,000 acres of land upto December.
Altogether 525000 people of Mumbai had submitted a mass petition to Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh to buy land for a small house at the price fixed by the government. As many as 125000 people had formed thousand of co-operative societies and each member of these societies had deposited Rs 10,000 in a bank which had amounted to the total amount of Rs 125 crore.
Mr Bardhan said in the letter it was estimated that 6000 acres of land would be sufficient for the construction of five lakh small flats, each measuring 250 to 500 square feet. If another 4000-acre of land was kept as open space for civic amenities, the government would still have 20,000 acres of land.
He urged Dr Singh to repeal the Act in ''indecent haste'' much before the forthcoming Nagpur session of the state assembly in order to sort out the issue after proper examination.