Bombay HC Nullifies Allotment of Plot Reserved for Sports Complex to Progressive Homes

In a significant ruling, the Bombay High Court has mandated the Maharashtra government to reclaim 20 acres of land in Ghansoli, Navi Mumbai, originally reserved for a government sports complex, from realty developer Kalpataru’s subsidiary, Ixora Properties. The decision underscores the court’s concern over the state’s prolonged failure to develop the sports complex, initially intended to foster sports and nation-building.

Background and Legal Battle

In an affidavit filed by Aseemkumar Gupta, Principal Secretary of the Urban Development Department (UDD), it was revealed that the state government had taken a stance that the cost of the 20 acres, as demanded by CIDCO, would be Rs 2500 crore. This pricing was contested by the court, especially given CIDCO's prior allotment of 36 acres to the Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC) for a sports complex at a significantly lower lease premium of Rs 22 crore.

Court's Criticism and Orders

The HC criticized the state government and UDD officials for their "lackadaisical approach" over the past 20 years, resulting in the failure to establish the international-standard sports complex on the 61-acre CIDCO plot. The court also quashed CIDCO's 2017 decision to allot part of this land to a builder, Progressive Homes, for commercial use, calling it "objectionable, arbitrary, and illegal."

Justice Girish Kulkarni and Justice Jitendra Jain emphasized the necessity of accessible sports facilities in urban areas like Navi Mumbai, highlighting the detrimental impact on children and youth deprived of these amenities. The court noted the importance of sports in the development of citizens and the nation, reinforcing that such facilities should not be compromised for commercial exploitation.

Future Directions and Additional Sports Complex

While the state had proposed relocating the sports complex to a remote site in Mangaon taluka, 115 km away, the HC deemed this move impractical due to the lack of infrastructure in the rural area. The court suggested that while an additional sports complex could be developed in Raigad, it should not substitute the one planned for Navi Mumbai.

Public Interest Litigation (PIL) and Ruling Impact

The ruling came in response to a PIL filed in 2019 by the Indian Institute of Architects, Navi Mumbai chapter, represented by Shekhar Bagool and Kaushal Jadia. The PIL argued against the conversion of land reserved for the government sports complex into commercial use. The court’s judgment paves the way for better sports facilities and policies in the state, ensuring that the land in Ghansoli is used as intended for the public good.


The Bombay High Court’s decision highlights the importance of prioritizing public interest and sports development over commercial gains. The ruling directs CIDCO to hand over the entire plot in sectors 12 and 12A to the state for the sports complex, either free or at government rates, reinforcing the role of sports in the holistic development of the community.
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