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‘Contract exchange in 2 days to buy Ambedkar’s London house’


Mumbai: Amid reports that the owner of the three-storey London bungalow where Babasaheb Ambedkar lived as a student in the 1920s may withdraw his offer to sell the property, the Maharashtra government today informed that the “exchange of contracts” will take place within two days.

All procedures related to acquiring the 2,050 sq ft bungalow will be over and it will be handed over to the state government within the next 15 days, state social justice minister Rajkumar Badole said.

“There is nothing called last day for the purchase of this house. It has been decided that the exchange of contract between both parties will take place within two days. There is no monetary problem as far as the government is concerned. There have been hiccups in the process, but the government will certainly buy the house within 15 days,” Badole told PTI.

He alleged that reports of the owner threatening to withdraw his offer if the deal is not processed by today were planted by Opposition to project the government in bad light.

“The Opposition could do nothing about it in 15 years. When we are taking a step, they want to pull us back by planting stories that would put the government unnecessarily in a bad light,” he said.

Reacting to it, Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam alleged that Badole’s statement “smells of hypocrisy” and proves that this government has no respect for Ambedkar.

“The cultural affairs minister (Vinod Tawde) went to London and announced that the government will buy the house. If the government did intend to buy the home, where has the money that they claim was allocated gone? We have just highlighted that the government is disrespectful towards Ambedkar,” Nirupam said.

The state had announced to buy the property at Rs 31 crore, and made a budgetary allocation of Rs 40 crore. However, red-tape within the departments has resulted in the transaction taking too long.

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