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Our biggest challenge is to solve water crisis: Panvel civic chief

Refusing to be bogged down by the no-confidence motion against him, Panvel City Municipal Corporation commissioner Sudhakar Shinde has continued working on providing basic amenities to residents

mumbai Updated: Apr 14, 2018 00:54 IST
Nibandh Vinod
Nibandh Vinod
Hindustan Times
Panvel,Mumbai,Sudhakar Shinde
Panvel City Municipal Corporation commissioner Sudhakar Shinde has a vision for Panvel, charting out a roadmap to solve water crisis and garbage issues, provide the city with schools, gardens and other amenities.(Bachchan Kumar/HT photo)

Undeterred by strong opposition from various quarters for his style of working, Panvel City Municipal Corporation (PCMC) commissioner Sudhakar Shinde has his eyes set on the development of the city.

The fledgling municipal corporation is still struggling with huge responsibilities and the first chief of the PCMC, which was formed on October 1, 2016, has a task cut out.

Refusing to be bogged down by the no-confidence motion against him, Shinde has continued working on providing basic amenities to residents. As what was expected, the state government on Thursday rejected the no-trust motion by the BJP-ruled PCMC.

Steering clear on any controversy, Shinde had refused comment on the no-trust motion and also refused to speak after the government notification in his favour.

He has a vision for Panvel, charting out a roadmap to solve water crisis and garbage issues, provide the city with schools, gardens and other amenities.

Despite ensuring the overall development of Panvel, some people are opposing you. Why?

Everybody has his own point of view. We are working with utmost sincerity, transparency and efficiency for development and setting up the newly formed Panvel City Municipal Corporation (PCMC). My focus is on development, issues of people and how to resolve them. As an individual, I have worked towards development of people and to provide the best services to citizens.

As the first municipal commissioner of Panvel City Municipal Corporation (PCMC), how are you dealing with the new challenges?

As parking is a major issue, the PCMC will come out with a policy. We have appointed an agency to draft a detailed project report for underground sewage, underground drainage, underground electrification and all-weather roads for old Panvel. There are plans to beautify lakes, build gardens, facility centre for special children and state-of-the-art schools.

Garbage collection is a major issue in PCMC areas.

The state government recently issued a notification asking the City and Industrial Development Corporation (Cidco) to continue picking up garbage from areas under PCMC until a three-member committee appointed by it submits a roadmap for the transfer of civic services. The panel has been given three months’ time. The situation has been resolved. We are also finalising a policy to process debris and make it useful, may be in the form of bricks, in the construction sites.

Every year, Panvel faces severe water crisis because of poor supply. What is the municipal corporation doing to solve it?

Our biggest challenge is to solve the water crisis. We are taking help of the state government- sponsored watershed programme, Jalyukta Shivar Abhiyan, through the Raigad collector. The pipelines are 30 to 40 years old. Under Amrut Mission, we have completed 70% work of laying of new pipelines. This will help eliminate water distribution losses. We are also in talks with the Central and the state governments for a Rs500-crore water supply scheme which will provide additional water to old Panvel as well as new nodes of Cidco.

There seems to be coordination issues between Cidco and the PCMC.

The PCMC and Cidco are mature enough to coordinate and sort out issues in the best interest of the public. The Cidco MD is a senior officer, an experienced bureaucrat whose guidance and support is needed for the development of PCMC. I hope to get full support from him.

After taking charge as the PCMC chief, you too strong action against illegal brick kilns in the area. However these are back. Residents of Kharghar and Kamothe have complained about increased in air pollution.

Unauthorised brick kiln owners should stop operations immediately. The PCMC will take strict action against them.

First Published: Apr 14, 2018 00:52 IST