With the formation of the East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC), the demand for the right to spend money in unauthorised colonies is gaining momentum again.
The corporation approved a budget of Rs. 1500 crore on Tuesday, the lowest of the three corporations and decided that it will work towards getting more funds so that the colonies can be developed.
EDMC consists mostly of unauthorised colonies set up by immigrants on the eastern bank of Yamuna.
According to the new East Delhi Mayor Annapurna Mishra, it is only by empowering the municipal body that the split of MCD will be fruitful.
The EDMC too has introduced a massive cut in the local area development fund for the councillors, just like the North Delhi municipal corporation. While the unified MCD had approved R2.5 crore for each councillor, the EDMC has approved R51 lakh for each of the 64 councillors, a reduction of nearly 80 per cent. The massive cut in funds would indirectly hit development projects pertaining to improvement in roads, streetlights and sanitation facilities.
"The budget has been kept low which might pose a problem in carrying out development. At the same time, under the current rules, the municipal corporation cannot spend money on the unauthorised colonies which means that a majority of the area will not see any development work," said Mishra.
Taking the demand further, party state president Vijender Gupta lashed out at the Delhi Government on Tuesday, alleging that the Sheila Dikshit government was extending no help to the newly-formed corporations.
"When the corporation was unified, the money was distributed equally throughout Delhi. Now with the civic body being trifurcated, the North and East zones will be financially weaker. In this case, there should be more monetary support from the government but instead of that, they are pulling the corporations down," Gupta said.
Gupta added that Rs. 2305 crore had to be sanctioned by the Delhi government, which also needed to be divided equally among all three corporations. North Delhi mayor had also cried foul over paucity of funds.