Women are set to get 50% reservation in the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) from next year but official records show that the performance of the 89 women corporators in the civic general body has been poor.
Out of 89 women corporators in the civic general body, 53 have spoken less than 10 times in the last one year. Thirty have not spoken at all in the general body meetings. Only 23 have spoken between three and 10 times.
This is what the data compiled by the BMC show.
There are about five general body meetings every month. The issues raised in the general body get prompt attention of the civic administration.
There are only 12 women corporators who have had an impressive record of raising issues or giving opinions in more than 25 meetings.
On an average, this comes to less than 15% of women corporators who are vocal in making their presence felt regularly in the civic house.
The state assembly recently passed a bill giving 50% reservation to women in municipal corporations, district councils, municipal councils and village councils.
This will now increase the strength of women corporators in the civic body to 151.
The attendance of these corporators is between 70% and 85% and they get a fixed allowance to attend these meetings.
Women corporators are not fazed by the data.
“Though most women corporators do not participate in house proceedings, they have done commendable work in their wards. That is why they are elected again. The 50% reservation will give women more representation as well as more opportunities in the civic house,” said Shiv Sena corporator Rajul Patel.
Many said there is a need to train first-time women corporators in the BMC Act, nomenclature and the functioning of the administration.
Rukmini Kharatmol, a corporators from Chembur, said that women don’t speak in the general body due to lack of knowledge of the functioning of the general body.
“But there are cases where women who don’t take part in discussions have done impressive developmental work in their wards,” she added.