Vijayawada: Andhra Pradesh high court on Friday stayed the auction of five land parcels in Vizag city under the Mission Build AP program.

A PIL had been filed to challenge the tender notification issued by the National Building Construction Corporation (NBCC) for the sale of lands. The petitioners argued that the high court has stayed the sale proceedings in similar cases and sought interim orders to stay the auction proceedings.

NBCC has issued notification for the outright sale of 18 parcels of land in Walter ward (Beach Road), Aganampudi, and Fakirtakiya in Visakhapatnam through e-auction on behalf of Mission Build AP of the state government. It had invited bids from prospective buyers which had to reach the office till April 22.

The lands to be auctioned was 13.59 acres, survey number 1101, on Beach Road; 0.20 acres, survey number 27-49, in Aganampudi with the reserve price of Rs 1.30 crore; 0.30 acres, survey numbers 27-49, in Aganampudi (Rs 1.95 crore); 1 acre, survey number 38-4 (plots 2A/2B), in Fakirtakiya (Rs 2.33 crore); 1.93 acres, survey numbers 100-9, in Fakirtakiya, 11 bits of 0.10 acres (Rs 0.43 crore each), another bit of 0.83 acres (Rs 3.66 crore), and 0.35 acres, survey number 100-5, in Fakirtakiya (Rs 1.47 crore). Registration fee was set at Rs 1,180 and auction processing fee at Rs 10,620.

The bidders were asked to register themselves with RailTel Corporation of India Ltd. The bid for e-auction was to start with the reserve price, and the minimum increment was Rs 1 lakh. Successful bidders were asked to submit documents at the office of NBCC located at Stalin Corporate Tower in Vijayawada.

Meanwhile, the move drew sharp criticism from various quarters, who opposed it stating that it will not serve the public interest in the long run as the government is trying to alienate its lands.

"Every stretch of government land, whether it is small or large, is required to create social infrastructure. Many real estate developers were waiting to grab these plots and the government may be playing into their hands," said former Union energy secretary EAS Sarma.

After hearing the petitioners, the high court stayed the sale proceedings and asked the state government to file an affidavit into the matter.

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