Mumbai: MBMC set to spend nearly Rs 4 crore for its civic elections slated for August 20

Bhayandar: When it comes to conduct of elections, a huge amount of resources and efforts is required, be it planning, labour, vigilance, technology and for that matter, money. Keeping these in mind, the Mira Bhayandar Municipal Corporation (MBMC) has projected an expenditure of Rs. 3. 85 crore for the polls scheduled to be held on August 20.

Budgetary allocations have been made for funding the entire election procedure — from setting up polling centres, transportation of EVMs, deputing surveillance squads, election-related advertisements and awareness campaigns to the expenditure on the staff that will be handling the polling and counting of votes.

With over 5.93 lakh eligible voters, it implies an average spend of Rs.65 per voter. Interestingly, the per person expenditure on conducting the current civic polls has witnessed a significant two-fold jump — from Rs.35 in 2012 to around Rs. 65 in 2017. Apart from the newly introduced four-member panel system, the reasons for the hike in poll expenditure could be attributed to the broadened voter base besides introduction of mobile apps and a series of awareness drives undertaken by the civic administration to enhance figures of the voter turn-out.

“I am personally ensuring that not a single paisa is wasted; however, the funds come from none other than the taxpayers’ pockets, which again underlines the need for citizens to actively participate in the elections and exercise their franchise,” said civic chief Naresh Gite.

While an average turnout of 52 per cent was registered in the 2012 polls, the MBMC is going extra miles with optimistic estimates anticipating a significant increase this time around. The civic body will also arrange facilities for senior citizens and differently-abled who may not be able to climb stairs at polling centres.

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