Now, BJP wants fund for aldermen

A SECTION of the BJP corporators put another hurdle in the Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC) budget a day ahead of its presentation by raising the demand of fund allotment to aldermen. While the BJP is divided on the issue, the Congress has threatened to take the matter to court.

india Updated: Mar 24, 2006 13:22 IST

A SECTION of the BJP corporators put another hurdle in the Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC) budget a day ahead of its presentation by raising the demand of fund allotment to aldermen. While the BJP is divided on the issue, the Congress has threatened to take the matter to court.

Significantly, most of the co-opted corporators (aldermen) are former minister Umashankar Gupta’s supporters. Hence, the division in the BJP corporator group.

Congress members said the aldermen were never given funds, as they are not elected like the corporators. They pleaded that this would create legal problems.

Mayor Sunil Sood is beleaguered as without the BJP support, budget could not be passed in the 66-member council. The BJP has majority with 40 corporators.

It is learnt that the Mayor has given consent to providing Rs five lakh as corporators’ fund beside allocation of funds equal to 50 per cent of property tax collected in their respective wards.

However, the leader of BJP corporators group Ashok Pandey told Hindustan Times that their group would demand increase in the corporator’s quota to Rs 10 lakh.

He said the BJP corporators group would also present amendments to provide ward-wise funds for road maintenance. If the BJP force these amendments, the BMC would find it hard to arrange its share in the JNNURM and loan repayment to Housing and Urban Development Corporation (HUDCO) and other agencies. Besides HUDCO, the BMC has also taken loan from the IDBI.

Rs 750 crore BMC budget likely
THE BHOPAL Municipal Corporation (BMC) budget for 2006-07, to be presented on Friday, is likely to be over Rs 750 crore. If that happens, it would be the first time in the State when any municipal corporation would present such a big budget. The budget proposals have gone exceptionally high as major schemes worth Rs 400-crore under Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) are being included.

Total cost of the projects under the Union Government’s scheme would be Rs 2,153 crore, which is to be spent within next four year. However, all this would depend on the approval of Union Government. The schemes under Rs 180-crore Asian Development Bank-funded project would also be included in the scheme.

Besides, Rs 300-crore Narmada Water Supply Scheme is already underway. Moreover, the schemes, including Rs 35-crore Transport Nagar and Rs 15-crore Bairagarh Water Augmentation are already underway. The BMC has also taken a loan of Rs five crore for the construction of roads in MP Nagar while it planned to revive Rs 67-crore Kolar Augmentation Scheme. In such a situation, high budget quantum seems quite likely.

First Published: Mar 24, 2006 13:22 IST