The Adani Group on Tuesday emerged as the highest bidder for a project to redevelop the slum cluster of Dharavi in Mumbai, The Indian Express reported.

SVR Srinivas, the chief executive officer of the Dharavi Redevelopment Project, said that the conglomerate led by billionaire Gautam Adani submitted a bid of Rs 5,069 crore for the project, while the DLF Group quoted Rs 2,025 crore.

“There were three bidders in total,” Srinivas said. “However, only Adani and DLF were qualified in the final bidding since the other bidder, Naman Group didn’t qualify.” He added that his office will now approach the Maharashtra government to decide the next steps to be taken, and will form a special committee for the project.

The project will entail the rehabilitation of 6.5 lakh slum residents who currently live in an area spread over 2.5 square kilometres. It will involve the redevelopment of buildings and informal tenements, as well as the development of infrastructure such as water supply and sewage in Dharavi, considered to be among the world’s largest slums.

The Adani Group, along with the state government’s Slum Rehabilitation Authority, will need to create a special purpose vehicle to execute the project. The project is expected to be completed in seven years, Srinivas said, according to PTI.

In October, eight entities, including those based in South Korea and the United Arab Emirates, had attended a pre-bid meeting. However, only three of them – the Adani Group, DLF and Mumbai-based realty firm Naman Developers – had actually bid for the project.

In October 2020, the previous Maha Vikas Aghadi government had cancelled the bidding process for the project, citing challenges in the acquisition of railway land.

But in September, the newly-formed state government led by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde allowed fresh tenders for the project.