The municipal corporation (MC) is raking in the money from the public even for facilities that it charges for, but does not provide. For the past 11 months, air conditioners in the community centre in Sector 48 have remained non-functional, but the MC has been charging full amount while letting them out to those wanting to use the premises.
The MC is burning a hole in the pockets of residents, who fret and fume in this blistering summer heat, for basic services that it isn’t even offering. The civic body charges Rs 11,636 for booking one function at the Sector 48 community centre and the fee is inclusive of the facility of air conditioner. (It charges Rs 5,618 for non-AC facilities in nearly 39 community centres in the city.)
However, during the past 11 months, nearly 20 functions have been held every month in the Sector 48 community centre, where the air-conditioners continue to remain non-functional.
The community centre was inaugurated in November last year and is the first-of-its-kind in the southern sector of the city. The outer and inner designs of the centre resemble those of a hotel. After having constructed the hi-tech community centre, the MC assured people that a full air-conditioned hall with a seating capacity of 300 persons would be provided. The supervisor of the Sector 48 community centre Ankur Bansal admitted that there were no electricity metres for the air-conditioners installed in the community centre. He refused to comment when asked as to why the entire amount was charged when the facility was not provided.
Chandigarh-based Jagwinder Partap, who booked the community centre for November 21, said the centre had charged the full amount. He said, “When I questioned them, they threatened to cancel the booking. I lodged a complaint with MC officers, but no action has been taken so far.” Area councillor Davesh Moudgil said it was unfortunate that the MC was fleecing residents.
The company which installed nearly 50 ACs worth Rs 35 lakh in the community centre had provided warranty for a year. However, 11 months have already passed. Unless the MC acts immediately, this issue could remain unsolved for a long time.