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Alipore bungalow sale lifts real estate gloom

Spread over 48 cottahs on Judges Court Road, it sold last week for about Rs 90 crore
The bungalow on Judges Court Road in Alipore, which was sold last week

Sambit Saha   |   Calcutta   |   Published 28.07.20, 02:41 AM

A bungalow on Alipore’s Judges Court Road spread over 48 cottahs was sold last week for about Rs 90 crore, making it one of the largest such property deals in the city in recent times.

The deal lifts the gloom — even if fleetingly — that has hung over the real estate market ever since the outbreak of Covid-19.

The property used to belong to the late Avijit (Bobby) Mazumder, former chairman of Tractors India Ltd (TIL).

The buyer is a city-based stock broker, Prakash Baid, and his family. The three-storied bungalow is spread over 31,000 square feet and was registered in the name of the new owner last week.

Sumit Mazumder, younger brother of Bobby — as he was fondly known in the Calcutta business circles — declined to comment on the deal, saying it was a private matter.

Pramod Baid, Prakash’s brother, confirmed the transaction and said the family had bought the property but refused to divulge anything more about the big-ticket transaction.

The property has been on the market for more than a year. The conclusion of the deal at the height of the pandemic, which has flattened real estate transactions in the city especially in the luxury segment, underscores the enduring allure of Alipore as Calcutta’s best-known address.

David Udayendu Dass, Calcutta branch head of Sotheby’s International Realty — the property consultant that brokered the deal — said: “This deal is an indication that more and more ultra, high networth families are looking to invest in marquee residential properties in Calcutta.”

Built in 2009, the bungalow has five bedrooms and eight bathrooms. There is a curated garden behind the property with a 20ft cascading waterfall.

Sotheby’s had listed the property on its website and said it had a blue China room and a pipe and cigar room apart from a Ganesha room.

Bobby, who was well known for his exquisite taste, had created a stately home with period furniture in Burma teak and Italian marble for its floor. The furniture and fixtures have been sold along with the property but his wonderful collection of art and artefacts are not part of the deal.

Several original paintings of V.S. Gaitonde and M.F. Husain had adorned the walls of the property. Sources said this collection would be sold separately.

The bungalow was built on what was once a large, undivided plot on Judges Court Road that had been purchased at the turn of the last century by the family of Bobby Mazumder’s wife.

Arjun Roy, Bobby’s father-in-law and a well-known architect of his time, had carved up the huge property into smaller plots and sold them separately. The plot that the Baids have bought is the furthest from the main road (Judges Court Road), and belonged to Bobby Mazumder.

The latest deal underscores how a second-generation entrepreneur belonging to a small business family has pipped some of the biggest names in the city to grab a marquee property.

Not much is known about the Baids — a family that has a number of stock brokers and chartered accountants.

Deals in the luxury property market have slowed down over the years. A few years ago, two brothers of a well-known hosiery company had bought two large bungalows in Alipore, each measuring close to 60 cottahs. Each transaction was valued at about Rs 120 crore.

Soon after, the owner of a competing hosiery company snapped up five apartments at The 42, the city’s tallest building located on Chowringhee, at an estimated value of Rs 100 crore.

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