The Congress has decided to announce a flurry of sops, including free water and reduction in property tax,to woo voters ahead of the civic elections in Mumbai. The party will also promise 90 litres of water for every person, daily, if elected to power in the civic body.
Pothole-free roads and a waste-free city also features in the list of promises.
The freebies will be charted in the soon-to-be-released manifesto. They are on the lines of the Aam Aadmi Party announcements during the Assembly elections in Delhi, two years ago.
The party’s Mumbai president, Sanjay Nirupam, said that the supply of water was possible if the water tanker mafia menace could be weeded out. He said that when the shortfall of the water in the city was 550 million litre per day (MLD), 750 MLD was taken away by the tanker mafias in connivance with the corrupt politicians and civic officials.
“The permissible water supply (90litre per person per day) will be given free of charge; though over and above it will be charged. In most areas, even in buildings at plush localities, water is supplied only for 20-30 minutes as about 27% water gets wasted in leakages. The round-the-clock supply of the drinking water was easily possible if the leakages are plugged and the nexus of illegal sale of the water to tanker mafias was eroded,” Nirupam said.
The party has also promised good roads and a cleaner city if elected to power in the civic body. “The Rs352 crore road and Rs150 crore disilting scam that erupted in the civic body, had recently eclipsed civic administration. Despite having Rs6,611 crore for the repair of 2,000km roads, the civic body has not been able to give citizens pothole-free roads. Similar is the story with solid waste and dumping grounds. The Shiv Sena has failed to shut down the dumping ground in the city, despite having promised so in its manifesto last time. We will shut down the dumping grounds immediately after being elected to power,” said Nirupam.
Mumbai Congress also launched a massive campaign to highlight the ‘corrupt rule’ of Shiv Sena-BJP over the last two decades. Sanjay Nirupam announced that the party was resorting to traditional and modern mediums to expose the ruling combine. Streetplays directed by noted theatre personality Mandar Shinde will run about 150 plays that will directly hit various scams and irregularities that took place in the ruling regime, including the hardship faced by commoners due to demonitisation and Shiv Sena campaign Did You Know. The party is also launching a campaign on social media, besides advertising in the print media and through outdoor mediums.