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Who’ll face the fire — and court?

delhi Updated: Apr 30, 2012 00:43 IST
Hamari Jamatia

Apart from administrative issues, trifurcation of the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) will have a direct bearing on another side — the thousands of court cases related to various scams such as the ghost employees’ scandal and the Commonwealth Games streetlight deal.

With 3,000 cases related to the erstwhile MCD pending in various courts, a lot of confusion is expected in the coming few months. As the MCD has now ceased to exist, the cases will have to be distributed between the corporations.

To tide over the situation, the Director of Local Bodies (DLB) — the coordinating agency of the three corporations — has decided to designate a ‘lead corporation’ that will fight cases on behalf of all three according to the importance. http://www.hindustantimes.com/Images/Popup/2012/4/30_04_pg-04a.jpg

According to a notification issued by the DLB, court cases will be fought according to the implications on the corporations. So if a case has an implication on more than one corporation, one of them will have to take the lead in consultation with each other. The lead corporations will keep on changing.

The cases related to a particular zone will be transferred to the respective corporation. This will be done in cases of unauthorised construction, illegal trade and others.

It has already been done in a few smaller cases. We still need to see how it will work with the bigger cases such as the alleged streetlight scam during the Commonwealth Games and the ghost employees scam,” said an official of the North Delhi Municipal Corporation.

But officials of all three corporations have questioned the practicability of the move. They say every corporation will try to pass the buck since fighting cases is exhausting as well as costs a lot of money.

A former employee of MCD said thousands of cases are pending in the lower courts, Delhi High Court and the Supreme Court. “Despite concluding over 4,000 cases last year, there are still about 3,000 cases pending in the courts,” he said. The MCD last year managed to dispose of 2090 cases.