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Govt survey shows most support split

There may be some disgruntled voices within the Congress but residents of Delhi seem to be in favour of making the Municipal Corporation of Delhi more “responsive and accountable” by splitting it into smaller segments. Atul Mathur reports. Dividing MCD

delhi Updated: Apr 26, 2011 02:15 IST
Atul Mathur

There may be some disgruntled voices within the Congress but residents of Delhi seem to be in favour of making the Municipal Corporation of Delhi more “responsive and accountable” by splitting it into smaller segments.

About two-thirds of those surveyed in an opinion poll conducted on the ‘proposal to reconstruct Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) into five smaller corporations’ favoured the Delhi government’s decision.

Commissioned by the chief minister’s office, the Centre for Market Research and Social Development surveyed 7,012 people in 70 assembly constituencies to “assess the perception of the public on the performance of the MCD and to assess the state government’s initiative to divide it and create smaller bodies”.

According to the opinion poll, while 51% voters in Delhi are dissatisfied with the functioning of the MCD, a whopping 67% want the Delhi government to bring the municipal body under its direct control. Poor sanitation, corruption and inability to improve the road network came up as biggest failures of the MCD in the past four years.

“The division of MCD will make smaller civic bodies more responsible and efficient,” said chief minister Sheila Dikshit.

According to a member of the committee that prepared the recommendations, the division will make it easier for the civic agencies to carry out development work. “With fewer projects in their area, development projects will not take much time to start.”

On the recommendation of a three-member group of ministers, the Delhi Cabinet had, in principle, agreed to divide the MCD into five smaller corporations, increase the number of municipal councillors from the current 272 to 408 and create a municipal management council to oversee the working of smaller corporations.

Congressmen meet DPCC head

Congress workers and municipal councillors again objected to the Delhi Government’s decision to split MCD and increase the number of municipal wards from 272 to 408. In a meeting with Chaudhary Birendra Singh, AICC general secretary in-charge of Delhi, 70-odd MCD councillors and working committee members objected to the way the Delhi government decided on restructuring the civic body.

“After the decision, even bad characters have begun dreaming of being municipal councillors,” said a west Delhi MCD councillor requesting anonymity.