Maharashtra government set to increase bid for Air India building to Rs 1,600 crore
MUMBAI: The state is set to make a Rs 1,600 crore bid to buy the Air India building in Nariman Point after the previous attempt three years ago did not meet with success. At the time of the previous attempt by the state, Air India reportedly said that the building was valued at over Rs 2,000 crore.
The state plans to expand Mantralaya into the Air India building. Last month, deputy chief minister Fadnavis said that the state government was facing a space crunch to house government offices in Mantralaya and the annexe building.
Fadnavis said he had spoken to the civil aviation minister and that chief secretary Manu Kumar Srivastav would soon meet civil aviation ministry officials after a go-ahead from chief minister Eknath Shinde.
“Met Union Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia in New Delhi and requested to give the Air India building in Mumbai to the state government. At present, even with the Mantralaya and an annex building, the space for government offices is insufficient, hence the demand for this building. We had given this proposal when I was Chief Minister. But in the meantime, that proposal was withdrawn. After that we corresponded again. Currently, both the Reserve Bank and Maharashtra government have demanded this space,” Fadnavis tweeted.
The previous state offer of Rs 1,450 crore had been made during the days of the MVA government. Officials said that Air India officials had told the state government that according to them the valuation of the building was more than Rs 2,000 crore.
“The actual price would have been around Rs 1,100 crore to Rs 1,200 crore, but the government has to recover dues from Air India to the tune of around Rs 300 crore in 2018. Talks had resumed in 2021 under the MVA government but no deal was finalised,” an official said.
The state had leased the land for the sea-facing property to Air India in 1970 for a 99-year tenure. Air India vacated the building as part of its asset-monetisation plan and shifted its corporate office to New Delhi in February 2013.
Air India even invited tenders for the sale of the 23-storey building in 2018 but failed to evoke much response.