Come January, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) employees will not be getting leave. Reason: the mega BMC elections, which are scheduled to be held in the first week of February.
According to civic officials, the administrative work for the polls will begin in the first week of January. The civic staff will also be given training to conduct the elections next month. Consequently, municipal commissioner Ajoy Mehta has ordered the staff to refrain from taking leave to ensure the daily services don’t get affected because of the additional work. Civic officials said of the 1.1 lakh civic staff working across the city, close to 50,000 will be involved in election-related work.
According to senior civic officials, Mumbai will have 8,500 voting centres across the city. These centres will require five officials each. The civic body will also have to account for an additional 10% civic staff for election work, in case of an emergency.
A civic official said, “With a majority of the administration involved in election work, there are chances of lapses in day-to-day civic services. The commissioner does not want citizens to get affected in the bargain.”
From daily water supply to garbage collection to road repairs, health care, running schools and maintenance of buildings, the BMC is involved in various services for the city. This is not the first time that the civic chief has cancelled holidays for civic employees. In May 2016, Mehta had also cancelled holidays and weekly-offs for all the deputy municipal commissioners and assistant commissioners of all 24 wards to ensure all drains are cleaned and Mumbai is monsoon-ready.