Mumbai beaches will have to wait for lifeguards
Most people who visit beaches ignore warnings, so it is imperative to have lifeguards. In July this year, four youngsters got swept away by the strong currents at Juhu beach
After allegations of irregularities and blacklisting against a firm finalised to provide lifeguards for the city's beaches, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), at the Standing Committee meeting on Wednesday, rejected the proposal to appoint lifeguards.
During the meeting, a proposal to appoint lifeguards at six city beaches was tabled for approval. However, BJP Corporator Prabhakar Shinde raised the issue of the irregularities by the firm in the contract given by the Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC). Shinde said, "This contractor was penalised for not doing its work properly and later blacklisted by the MTDC. Now, the BMC is awarding the contract to the same firm that has faced action by another government agency."
Opposition leader Ravi Raja supported Shinde's allegation and said, "The BMC should cancel this proposal as the contractor has a bad track record. How can they award a contract to such a firm?" According to the proposal, a R13-crore contract was given to the firm for appointing 36 lifeguards at seven beaches – Girgaum, Dadar, Juhu, Versova, Aksa, Manori and Gorai – in two shifts.
Need for guards
Mumbai's coastline has beaches that either have strong undercurrents, such as at Juhu and Versova or sinking sand, like at Aksa and Gorai. Most people who visit beaches ignore warnings, so it is imperative to have lifeguards. In July this year, four youngsters got swept away by the strong currents at Juhu beach.
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