Mumbai citizens allege that politicians misusing public funds to woo voters

NGO members during the manifesto launch yesterday

The citizen's movement, Humara Sheher Mumbai Abhiyaan, has alleged that MP, corporator and MLA funds are only used ahead of polls to woo voters, but not used for public benefit. While releasing a People's Manifesto yesterday, the group, comprising 109 NGOs from across the city, alleged that politicians are overlooking some of the basic issues faced by the masses, especially women, children and the differently abled.

Group member Sitaram Shelar alleged, "Every politician is delivering speeches ahead of the BMC elections, but voices of the people living in the slums and that of women and children are being drowned."

With the help of their manifesto, the group is trying to offer solutions such as a more participatory government, performance appraisal system for the BMC officials and labourers. They are also fighting to ensure "basic amenities like water and housing are offered to people without discrimination on the basis of caste and creed". "There are times when the poor are tagged as 'non-Marathis', 'outsiders' or 'illegal residents'. The city needs labourers for their projects, but they are not willing to let them live here," said Shelar.

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