Residents of Ganga Kingston says no RTI action taken regarding PMC road
The residents have also resorted to online campaigns through social media platforms like Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and WhatsApp and even lodged complaints on the grievance redressal portal of the civic body to highlight their problems.pune Updated: Feb 04, 2018 16:47 IST
Residents of Ganga Kingston Co-operative Housing Society in Mohammadwadi are fighting a long battle to gain information from the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) under the right to information (RTI) act, related to the unconstructed Shankarrao Madhukar Ghule Patil road.
PMC, on its part, has still not given any detailed information on the road project, residents alleged. The first RTI application by the society seeking information on the road details was submitted to the public information officer (PIO) on September 15, 2017, and till date no proper reply has been received.
The society had sought details of the road construction from Raheja Vista to Ganga Kingston co-op housing society, wherein 10 specific questions were asked.
The residents sought the following in their RTI application: did the PMC sanction the road construction from Raheja Vista to Ganga Kingston and beyond in Undri-Mohammadwadi; the year in which the permission was granted; reasons behind the pendency of road construction over the past years; photocopies of the road map and PMC’s entire communication related to the road work; objections (if any) raised regarding the road construction; was the civic body under any pressure from some quarters because of which it was delaying road construction?
The residents have also resorted to online campaigns through social media platforms like Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and WhatsApp and even lodged complaints on the grievance redressal portal of the civic body to highlight their problems.
Surprisingly, instead of getting replies on time, society chairman Daljeet Goraya received calls from officials claiming to be from the PMC road department, in the month of October-November, who promised that the work would start within 10 days and asked him to withdraw the RTI application.
Goraya received a late written reply from the PMC land acquisition department (PIO) on November 19, 2017, stating that his application has been forwarded to the road department for action.
“I received the reply two months after I filed the first RTI. Instead of giving me the exact information on the road, it was stated that it has been forwarded. I then filed the first appeal before the PMC seeking the crucial information. However, they failed to provide us the exact information which is our right,” he said.
On November 29, 2017, Ganga Kingston Society received an interesting response which stated, “The estimated cost of the project has been approved and tenders have been invited. After the tender is properly approved the road department will start the work.”
The society, under the chairmanship of Goraya, has now filed a second appeal with the chief information commissioner for Pune Region as they are not satisfied with the response. “Instead of providing us our basic right to information and our legal right to road, the PMC is hiding information on the issue. Instead of protecting our rights, it is going on the back foot on this crucial issue. This needs an investigation,” he said.
Mayor Mukta Tilak did not respond to HT despite several attempts to contact her.
Meanwhile, a massive signature campaign will be carried out by all the area residents to demand early construction of the road in the area. A number of civil society organisations and legal experts are ready to take up the issue given the pathetic and anti-people attitude of the PMC, said Sanjay Shinde, a regular visitor to the area.