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Centre snubs Delhi again

The Union Home Ministry has sent back the Chief Minister's reworked proposal that sought trifurcation of MCD

In a big jolt to the state government, the Union Home Ministry has sent back its proposal to trifurcate the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD), again. Sources in Delhi government said the Home Ministry has asked the Sheila Dikshit-led government to elaborate about administrative structure and financial aspect of the bodies.
 

Help Needed: CM Sheila Dikshit has been pursuing the matter for a long
time now. File Pic


"A fresh letter has been received from the Home Ministry asking for more clarity on the subject," said a top government official. Dikshit has been strongly pushing for trifurcation of the MCD as well as increasing reservation of seats for women to 50 per cent from the current 33 per cent, ahead of the next year's municipal polls.

Not only BJP, Dikshit had to face opposition from within the Congress for her proposal. She had met Home Minister P Chidambaram twice in July to request him to clear the proposal at the earliest.  The state government wanted to set up a new body called Delhi Municipal Authority (DMA), to coordinate functioning of the proposed municipalities. The chief minister would have been the head of the DMA.

Points of concern
The Home Ministry sent back the proposal in July, seeking modification on the ground that coordination among the proposed civic bodies may be difficult, in case separate parties come to power in three municipalities, as well as in Delhi government. The plan to set up the DMA was dropped and instead, the state government decided to create a post of director of civic bodies, who will coordinate among the three municipalities.

The MCD elections will be held early next year and Dikshit has already said the government wants to complete the process of division of the body ahead of polls. As per the Bill, the new civic bodies in north and south Delhi will have 104 wards each, while the civic body in east Delhi will have 64 wards. North and south Delhi municipality will have 26 Assembly constituencies each, while the 16 Assembly segments will fall under the east Delhi municipality.

In April, the Delhi Cabinet had accepted recommendations of a high-level committee, headed by Health Minister A K Walia, which suggested splitting the civic body into five smaller municipalities. The panel also suggested increasing total number of wards from the current 272 to around 408.

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