Desilting of Mithi river put on hold for fear of another scammumbai Updated: Apr 13, 2017 09:25 IST
The standing committee put the appointment of a contractor for the desilting of Mithi river on hold after noticing that no major changes had been made to the proposal.(HT FILE)
With just two months before the monsoon, the standing committee of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) fears another desilting scam. The committee put the appointment of a contractor for the desilting of Mithi river on hold after noticing that no major changes had been made to the proposal.
The corporators are also worried that the delay in approving the proposed Rs3.47-crore project may mean it won’t be completed before the monsoon, which could cause flooding.
Two years ago, an investigation into civic officials and contractors after the city flooded on June 19, 2015, revealed malpractices and shoddy desilting of storm water drains.
Members of the standing committee on Wednesday asked the administration if any new measures had been incorporated to prevent a scam this time. They also pointed out that a dumping site is yet to be chosen and CCTVs is yet to be installed. The corporators also alleged that a contractor blacklisted by MMRDA has been getting the Mithi river desilting contract over the years.
Also, questions raised by the corporators who visited the sites where the silt is to be dumped have not been answered yet, they said.
Manoj Kotak, group leader of BJP, said, “There is a possibility of another scam as no changes have been made to the desilting proposal to keep a window open for cheating. This may also cause floods in parts of the city. We had demanded an explanation for why private land of villages in Mahape was being used for dumping as it is not good for the environment.”
While the Sena demanded that the proposal be put on hold, Congress and BJP demanded its rejection. With the help of MNS corporator Dilip Lande’s vote, Sena successfully put the proposal on hold. Congress corporator Asif Zakaria, said, “The proposal should be rejected as the BMC has not answered any of our queries and has been repeatedly doing the same mistakes.”
Shiv Sena group leader Yashwant Jadhav said, “The administration should have replied by now on how they plan to dump the silt from Mithi River and the security measures they will take to prevent a scam. Until they give us an answer, we will not approve the proposal.”