Instances of Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) corporators complaining of the lack of importance given to them while taking administrative decisions are far too common. Now, as an extension of this problem, the independent corporator of Colaba area, Makrand Narvekar, has threatened to approach the court if the BMC fails to include areas which do not fall under the civic body’s jurisdiction, in the 20-year initiative, Development Plan 2014, which gauges which area of the city is in need of better facilities. As part of the plan, the BMC decides on granting provisions such as more hospitals, schools, open spaces, gardens and new roads to citizens.
Makrand Narvekar (right) has threatened to approach the court, against the BMC
For the plan, the civic body conducted workshops in all of the city’s 24 wards, to take into consideration the opinion of resident associations, corporators, MLAs and MPs. But to the dismay of the citizens, almost no opinion was sought at the workshops conducted last week. The workshops have been on from August 11.
Even before, the civic body was criticised for not including areas that fell under the jurisdiction of other agencies (such as Navy and Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority) in the development plan. In this recent case, at the workshop, Narvekar, who is also an advocate, objected to the fact that no facilities or plans were thought of for A ward in Colaba, as the area was considered to fall under the Navy’s jurisdiction. Calling it a bad decision, he asked the BMC to include such areas in the plan as well.
Narvekar, the elected corporator of Colaba area, said, “The BMC always does something on its own. Citizens have no say in the matter — in fact, many areas in Colaba are not even included in the plan. I have written to the BMC saying that the body must include them as well, as residents expect facilities from us as a civic body, which we should provide them with. If they don’t, I will be knocking the doors of the court and will file a petition.” The A ward assistant municipal commissioner, Devidas Kshirsagar, said, “The workshop went smoothly and all suggestions and objections will be taken care by the development plan department of BMC and will be worked on.”