Civic body passes the proposal

Mumbai : Amidst pointed criticism from the opposition, the BMC’s general body on Monday passed the administration’s proposal to nominate Mumbai to participate in the Central government’s venture of developing 100 smart cities.

The Central government has invited applications for allocation of funds worth Rs 100 crore to develop 10 smart cities in Maharashtra. It has also chalked out qualifying parameters like water and solid waste management, transport and traffic management etc for a city that applies to this scheme.

The Congress party in the BMC opposed administration’s decision vehemently and all other opposition parties also showed solidarity. Congress corporator Pravin Chheda alleged that an influx of Rs 100 crore into the administration will only add to the possibility of corruption in the administration and the money will not really be used for development.

He said, “The BMC’s annual budget is around Rs 40,000 crore and the city is still under-developed. We rank 140 in cleanliness, so clearly our apparatus is insufficient to maintain the city. How will an additional Rs 100 crore help? If the government really wanted to make Mumbai a smart city, it would have developed it in the 15 years of Shiv Sena’s rule in the BMC.”

Chheda also alleged that Mumbai does not qualify for being a potential smart city. He said it does not have consistent water supply or a solid waste disposal mechanism which is essential criteria for smart cities.

Defending his party’s stand, BJP corporator Manoj Kotak said, “The opposition parties are opposing this proposal only because it is the Modi led government’s venture. They have not completely understood the concept of smart cities.”

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