Doon the biggest gainer as Uttarakhand fixes population criteria for corporator seats
Amid the ongoing protests against the expansion of urban local bodies (ULBs) in parts of the state, the Uttarakhand government has fixed the number of corporators for the eight municipal corporations.
A notification issued by the urban development department in this regard on December 4 has locked the criteria for the election of corporators to the municipal corporations depending on their population. As per the notification, the minimum number of corporators in a municipal corporation would be 40 (for a population ranging from 1.01 to 2 lakh) while the maximum number would stand at 100 (for a population of more than 7.01 lakh).
“The number has been fixed keeping in mind the population in respective municipal corporation areas,” Vinod Kumar Suman, additional secretary (urban development) told HT Tuesday.
It may be recalled that many villages have been included in the municipal corporation limits of late, paving way for their expansion — a move which has triggered protests in many parts of the state.
The development comes months ahead of the civic polls, which are due to be held in Uttarakhand in April next year and are likely to have far-reaching political impact. For instance, in the Dehradun Municipal Corporation (DMC) – where the number of corporators will go up from 60 to 100 — as its population will rise to 8 lakh with the inclusion of 72 adjoining villages in the DMC limits — will provide 40 additional wards as fresh political playground to local leaders.
The state has six municipal corporations – including Dehradun, Haridwar, Roorkee, Haldwani-Kathgodam, Rudrapur and Kashipur -- while the government has recently upgraded Kotdwar and Rishikesh municipal councils to municipal corporations, elections for which will take place for the first time in April 2018.
While the number of corporators has been fixed, the process of delimitation – carving out of new/modification of areas in existing wards – is yet to take place. “Work (on delimitation) is going on and we are hopeful of completing the process soon,” Suman said.
Probe ordered into ‘financial irregularities’ at 29 local bodies
Urban development minister Madan Kaushik has directed officials to carry out a probe in the alleged irregularities that were found in the audit of 29 urban local bodies of Uttarakhand. Based on Kaushik’s directions, the urban development department has asked district magistrates to get the irregularities probed through additional district magistrates (finance). The 29 local bodies are spread across 10 districts. These include one municipal corporation (Haridwar), 10 municipal councils and 18 town panchayats.