Don't add Kharghar to proposed Panvel Municipal Corp: residents

Residents of neighbouring Kharghar suburb have opposed the Maharashtra government's proposal to club the township into the proposed Panvel Municipal Corporation and have written to Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis seeking a reconsideration on the move.

The Maharashtra government last week issued a notification for creation of one more municipal corporation -- Panvel Municipal Corporation-- in the state and plans to incorporate a total of 68 villages, including Kharghar, into it.

Co-ordinator of Kharghar Citizens Forum Ravi Shrivastav said the forum has requested the government to analyse the merits and demerits of the proposed move.

The forum members have written a letter to the Chief Minister and demanded that either the suburb be clubbed into Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC) or the status quo be maintained.

"NMMC's headquarter is 4 km away from Kharghar, while Panvel Municipal Corporation's headquarter would be 12 km away from the suburb. If Kharghar is attached with the PMC, then the public would have to travel 12 km for every civic work," Shrivastav, who is a founding member of Aam Aadmi Party, said, adding that connectivity problems would make the move a "curse".

Kharghar, with a population of five lakh, is presently a CIDCO-administered node of Navi Mumbai and its water supply, waste disposal and other public infrastructure is maintained by CIDCO.

Despite the suburb having a Gram Panchayat, there are more then 250 high-rise towers, malls, hotels and educational institutions such as ITM, NIFT, YMT, Tata Memorial Hospital and other reputed establishments.

Alleging that there is a political axe to grind in the proposed inclusion, Shrivastav said, "If Kharghar is clubbed with the NMMC, the influential local leaders would be able to create space for a mere four to five wards and corporators. But if the suburb is incorporated into the proposed Panvel Municipal Corporation, then they would succeed in adjusting their 80 corporators and wards into the body."

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