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Pune Mayor scraps municipal commissioner’s decision on road digging for mobile company

Mayor Mukta Tilak said that the commissioner did not follow the general body’s resolution as it had instructed the administration not to give fresh permission for road digging until the mobile firm’s dues were cleared. 

pune Updated: Oct 16, 2017 21:38 IST
Abhay Khairnar
Abhay Khairnar
Hindustan Times, Pune
Pune,Mayor,Municipal Commissioner
Earlier, Kumar had, on his own accord, given permission to the company in question, which has tax dues worth Rs 30 crore, to dig roads in the city.(HT FILE PHOTO)

After heavy criticism from the ruling party and the opposition, mayor Mukta Tilak scrapped Pune municipal commissioner Kunal Kumar’s decision to give permission to a mobile phone company to dig roads in Pune.

Earlier, Kumar had, on his own accord, given permission to the company in question, which has tax dues worth Rs 30 crore, to dig roads in the city. No mention of the mobile phone company’s dues were made at the time.

Mayor Mukta Tilak said that the commissioner did not follow the general body’s resolution as it had instructed the administration not to give fresh permission for road digging until the mobile firm’s dues were cleared.

Standing committee chairman Murlidhar Mohol said that as this was finance related and against the general body’s policy, the commissioner needed to ask the standing committee for approval. Instead of keeping elected members in loop, the administration gave “false information” to the standing committee, it has been now alleged.

Leader of house Srinath Bhimale said, “By taking such a decision, commissioner is making ruling party’s position difficult and forcing them to take a stand against the administration.”

Opposition party leader Chetan Tupe demanded the municipal commissioner disclose “under whose pressure he has taken such decision”.

Congress leader Arvind Shinde said, “Property tax and estate department has clearly given a written remark, not to approve the proposal for road digging, but the commissioner overruled their remark.”

BOX

Kumar digs in for an explanation

Pune Municipal Commissioner Kunal Kumar said that mobile phone companies had approached the high court and the next hearing is in November. The court has told the PMC not to forcibly recover dues, since the administration has already recovered ₹40 crore from various mobile firms. The commissioner also said that the general body has given permission in the last two years, to mobile companies with dues, to dig the roads.

First Published: Oct 16, 2017 21:36 IST