In a three-hour special house meeting on Thursday, councillors bid an emotional farewell to SAD-BJP councillor from ward number 10 Malkiat Singh (35), who died at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi.
Singh, who was battling for life for more than a month at AIIMS, breathed his last on October 7. The house unanimously resolved to approach the UT administration to secure a job for the wife of the deceased, along with demands for reimbursing medical expenses and providing provisions for the education of his children.
The councillors pressed upon mayor Harphool Chander Kalyan and municipal corporation commissioner Vivek Pratap Singh to pursue the matter vehemently.
They said Malkiat was a public servant and fell ill during an official tour, and therefore, his family should be given adequate compensation and benefits.
Deputy mayor Davesh Moudgil, who broke down during the tribute, said such incidents could happen to anyone and health schemes must be implemented for MC councillors. He said Malkiat was on official duty and his medical expenses, at the very least, should be borne by the government.
Another Bharatiya Janata Party councillor Asha Jaswal, while quoting a judgment from the Supreme Court said, "Councillors are considered public servants and are liable for all benefits."
Meanwhile, former mayor Subash Chawla said in the past, several resolutions had been approved in the house, but none bore fruit. He said this matter must be pursued till it bore results.
Former mayor Pardeep Chhabra also echoed similar sentiments. "Last time, the administration either rejected the proposal or sat over it. This time, we must follow it to the end," he said.
MC commissioner Vivek Pratap Singh assured the house that the matter would be pursued on a priority basis and a plan for a health scheme for MC councilors would also be considered.
Malkiat Singh, a part of the municipal corporation's controversial ten-day study tour to Port Blair, Chennai and Kolkata from August 31 to September 9, complained of severe abdominal pain on September 5 during a visit to Havelock island at Andaman and Nicobar Islands. He was diagnosed with a severe case of pancreatitis and was shifted to the Intensive Care Unit at AIIMS, where he died on October 7.