With less than three months left for the municipal polls, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in three corporations has started the exercise of meeting councillors and assessing the ground situation. Manoj Tiwari, the newly appointed president of Delhi BJP, will be meeting all party councillors next week to assess their performance. Other party functionaries are also likely to be present at the meeting.
The move assumes significance as three corporations have been facing sharp criticism over poor sanitation, rampant corruption, and non-payment of salaries particularly in the last two years. In January this year, over 1.5 lakh sanitation workers had refused to remove garbage due to non-payment of salaries and dues bringing to light the ‘mismanagement’ of corporations.
Tiwari said the meeting will be a formal interaction with the councillors. “At present, I am meeting a lot of people and have been occupied with awareness drives for demonetisation. After December 17, I plan to meet the party corporators,” he said.
He added that the aim of the meeting is to understand the hurdles and problems faced by the councillors while discharging their duties. “It is always said that there is an acute shortage of funds in the corporations. That is not true. The Centre has already allocated ₹3,000 crore for MCDs, which will come through the Delhi government. The state government is just to inform the ‘head’ under which the money will be utilised. But it is not being done and funds are lying unutilised. We will discuss why such a situation is prevailing in civic bodies despite the Centre being ready to help,” Tiwari said.
Soon after his appointment, Tiwari had said that sanitation and traffic are on the top of his priority list and he will be taking up these issues with the concerned authorities.
However, councillors said that they did not have any information yet about the meeting with the state party chief. “All councillors met him individually soon after his announcement as party president but did not have a formal discussion. If a meeting is called, we will go and present our views,” said a senior councillor in North Delhi Municipal Corporation.