More trouble for citizens: BMC admin, corporators lock horns over road cleaning | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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More trouble for citizens: BMC admin, corporators lock horns over road cleaning

Even as HT’s audit has pointed out loopholes in BMC’s claims of monsoon-preparedness, here’s something else that might add to Mumbaiites woes during the rains.

mumbai Updated: Jun 07, 2012 02:19 IST
Alok Deshpande

Even as HT’s audit has pointed out loopholes in BMC’s claims of monsoon-preparedness, here’s something else that might add to Mumbaiites woes during the rains.

The BMC administration and corporators have locked horns over a campaign to clean city roads. The standing committee on Tuesday refused to clear a proposal by the administration seeking a six-month extension for NGOs working under the Clean Mumbai Campaign. Under the campaign, 131 NGOs have been given the charge of keeping 750km of roads clean.

The administration has sought extension of the tender for the period January 1, 2012 to June 30, 2012. It claims the NGOs have worked on the campaign during this time. However, the standing committee has refused to pay the for this period.

If the civic administration wants to keep the campaign going, it will need to come up with a new proposal. If it fails to do so, there will be no plan in place to keep those roads clean, which could aggravate problems such as waterlogging in the monsoon.

“These organisations, responsible for keeping the city clean, have not done so.In spite of repeated refusals, the administration is coming forward with the same proposal” said Rahul Shewale, chairman, standing committee.

However, additional municipal commissioner Rajiv Jalota said that once the extension was granted, the administration would bring in a new scheme. “Around 70% of city roads are kept clean by private organisations. If we do not clear the proposal, it will be difficult to keep them clean.”

The initial contract was awarded in 2006, for seven months. A case was then filed by an organisation Kachra Vahatuk Shramik Sangh, which is pending in the Bombay high court. Contending that the case is still pending, and that city roads need to be kept clean, the administration has been successfully extending the contract every six months.

“The administration, instead of bringing in a new scheme, is adamant on extending the tender. Why should we give an extension to those not working properly? said Rais Sheikh, group leader, Samajwadi Party.