BMC engineers to move HC to seek dismissal of violent politicos

After an MNS leader beat up a BMC engineer, engineers of the municipal corporation have decided to approach the Bombay High Court and show the court evidence of civic officials being attacked. They want the court to come out with an order to immediately disqualify MLAs or corporators who assail civic officials.

We protest: BMC engineers went on strike yesterday to protest the manhandling of civic engineer Rajesh Rathod by MNS corporator Girish Dahanukar on Thursday. Pic/Satyajit Desai

Sainath Rajadhyaksha, general secretary of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Engineers Union, said they decided to knock court’s door after Rajesh Rathod, a junior engineer from G-South ward, was beaten up by MNS corporator Girish Dahanukar, at the latter’s office in Dadar.

This is not the first time a corporator attacked a BMC engineer. Earlier, MNS corporators Sandeep Deshpande and Dilip Lande had committed similar offences. 

The engineers have now decided that they won’t go to any corporator’s or MLA’s office to entertain them. “If they have any work they should come to us in our office and get it sorted,” said Rajadhyaksha.

They also want stringent action against netas who assault engineers. “Bad roads or any other problem is not completely our fault. Engineers cannot be attacked for administrative decisions,” he said.

Another engineer said, “We are government employees and these people who represent the public attack us. It affects our morale and even our family members, who are disturbed with these incidents. We feel we need to be protected and our last resort is approaching court.”

Rajadhyaksha also attributes the increasing problems to the shortage of engineers. “The population has grown twice and the engineer count is stagnant at 3,600. We need double the number of engineers than what we have now for efficient functioning,” he said.

Do you think attacking a public servant is justified?

Dilip Lande

Name: Dilip Lande
Designation: MNS group leader in BMC; corporator from Kurla

In the news for: On July 26, Lande and his supporters assaulted a road contractor and four labourers for not repairing potholes on LBS Marg in Kurla. Lande had then reportedly told the media that “this is the only way to awaken the authorities”.

His response: I am not aware of the incident that took place on Thursday as I was out of station. I came back on Friday and was busy so I cannot comment on the incident that took place in Dadar. While taking the law in your hands is not right, sometimes the person on the other side says such derogatory things that these things happen in the heat of the moment.

Sandeep Deshpande

Name: Sandeep Deshpande
Designation: MNS corporator from Dadar

In the news for: On July 23, he and his associates locked up 3 BMC engineers in the G-North ward office for over 6 hours, apparently to motivate them to level the roads in his area. “If they can’t fix potholes, they should quit,” he had then said.

His response: I personally feel that assaulting anyone is wrong but sometimes these things happen out of momentary rage. I think people should also understand that the officials are also at fault as even after making repeated complaints, they don’t attend to the problem and solve the issue. 

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