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CCTVs set up by elected members: With no data available, PMC shelves the plan

Civic administration has requested elected members to install cameras in their areas and allow Pune municipal corporation to monitor it.

pune Updated: Oct 10, 2018 16:57 IST
Abhay Khairnar
Abhay Khairnar
Hindustan Times, Pune
CCTVs,PMC,Elected members
CCTV cameras installed near Shinde high school on Golawalkar Guruji road in Sahakarnagar area.(HT PHOTO)

With no collective data available on the number of closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras installed by elected members in their areas from their ward development funds and how it is monitored, the Pune municipal administration has stopped the work of setting up CCTVs on interior roads. Civic officials said that there is no accountability of these cameras and whether they are functioning properly or not. Elected members and some of the MLAs have installed CCTV cameras from their development funds.

A conflict is on between the elected members and municipal administration on the issue of installing CCTV cameras in the city. While the Pune municipal corporation (PMC) has taken a clear stand that they would not allow to spend money on CCTV cameras, the elected members demand that the administration should listen to them. Pune mayor Mukta Tilak has decided to conduct a special meeting on CCTV cameras and form a policy on it.

Srinivas Kandul, PMC electric department head, said, “It is true that the PMC do not have the total number of CCTVs cameras installed in the city by the representatives and who are monitoring it. The work had been carried out at regional ward office level and the PMC will need to collect the data centrally.”

Kandul said that the civic administration had requested the elected members to install the cameras in the PMC properties so that the administration can monitor it. Otherwise, the elected members should bring in the police department to take care of these cameras as the PMC do not have the requisite monitoring system.

The PMC officials and some of the elected members said on anonymity that there is no accountability about these CCTV cameras and there quality. Questions are also being raised by the civic authorities as to who is monitoring these cameras and how are they maintaining it.

Kandul accepted that there is a need to have a centralised information regarding the installation and infrastructure of CCTV plan as taxpayers’ money is involved.

Allegations are also being made that many elected members are diverting funds from their budget to purchase CCTV cameras and requesting to install at various places in their wards. The PMC administration is of the view that police are covering all the main roads then why the PMC members want cameras on these same roads.

When Srinath Bhimale, leader of the house, asked the question on whether it is possible to install cameras on interior roads, the administration asked as who is going to monitor these cameras.

Opposition leader Chetan Tupe said that he had released fund to install cameras in Sadhana school area in Hadapsar, but the administration has denied its use. He criticised the administration and said that the PMC general body should frame a policy and execute the setting up of CCTVs. Meanwhile, the administration said that it cannot frame any policy on their own but need the cooperation of the elected members.

First Published: Oct 10, 2018 16:54 IST