Budget meet? Corporators just don’t care
In a startling revelation, of the 227 elected representatives governing the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), only 78, totalling to 34%, spoke during the budget discussion sessions that were held from March 15-18.mumbai Updated: Mar 23, 2011 01:34 IST
In a startling revelation, of the 227 elected representatives governing the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), only 78, totalling to 34%, spoke during the budget discussion sessions that were held from March 15-18.
Moreover, most who spoke discussed their individual wards instead of discussing the finances.
The special budget session of the civic general body should ideally be used as a forum to discuss income-related issues, establishment costs of the BMC, and prioritising the use of the budget. Municipal commissioner Subodh Kumar tabled a please-all budget of Rs21,000 crore in the standing committee on February 4. Following this, it came to the civic general body to discuss and debate on the ways to generate revenue and the funds that are to be expended on the development of the city.
The discussion that lasted for 30 hours, ended at 1.25am on Saturday early morning. Of those who spoke, 39 were male and female.
“In the four days of discussion, the corporators discussed the problems in their individual wards, which were completely irrelevant. Budget discussion meetings should focus on the city and how the services across the city can be improved,” said a senior civic official.
According to senior leaders in the BMC, speech made by a corporator during the budget session is considered a reflection of his understanding of civic governance.
“Elected representatives must take part in the budget session as it is their right to scrutinise what the BMC has on offer for the public,” said Shiv Sena leader Ravindra Waikar.
Meanwhile, corporators who didn’t speak said that as the administration doesn’t take cognisance of their views, raising an issue doesn’t make sense.
The corporators who wish to speak in these sessions should give their names to the municipal secretary department and the list is then sent to the mayor who decides on the hierarchy.
The municipal secretary department, this year, had asked the corporators to limit their speeches to ten minutes.
The civic general body will pass the budget for 2011-2012 by voting on March 29, for it to come into practice from April 1.