Return laptops or pay for them, BMC tells corporators
With 5 days left to complete their five-year term, the corporators who have not returned their laptops to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) will have to pay the cost of the laptops, which will be recovered from their property tax dues.
Ironically, the civic body is now planning to issue new laptops to all newly elected corporators on a non-returnable basis.
The current civic house will be dissolved on March 8 and the newly elected body will take over on March 9. Even after several reminders, 93 corporators have not surrendered their laptops that they were given the BMC in 2007. The cost of each laptop is Rs 52,000. The civic administration has given them an option to own the laptop by paying the BMC Rs24,275.
The laptops were handed out free of cost, on a returnable basis. The BMC spent over Rs1.4 crore to buy 280 laptops, of which 232 were given to corporators.
The rest were given to senior officials. Of 227 corporators, only 134 have returned their laptops, while others are yet to do so. Among those who haven't returned the laptops are 3 corporators-turned-MLA s Yogesh Sagar (Bharatiya Janata Party, Aslam Shaikh (Congress) Mangesh Sangle (Maharashtra Navnirman Sena).
"I will either return the laptop or pay the cost before my term gets over," said Aslam Shaikh, who was elected as MLA in 2009 from Malad constituency.
"Whoever will not return or fail to pay the cost, have to pay by their property tax dues. The cost of laptop will be include in their property tax bill," said a senior civic official on the condition of anonymity. Now the civic administration is planning to buy 232 pieces for corporators, which will be maintain and own by corporator themselves for the next five years.
The idea behind the distribution of laptop project was to give the corporators electronic access to the various proposals coming up for discussion.