Mumbai: Standing Committee insists on new BMC WhatsApp group for Covid transparency

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) standing committee on Thursday directed the civic administration that a common WhatsApp group should be formed with the municipal commissioner and all 227 corporators, so that transparency on the Covid-19 situation of Mumbai could be well maintained between the administration and public representatives.

Ravi Raja - Leader of Opposition (LoP) in the house and senior Congress corporator had moved a point of order during the meeting, saying that the administration is not taking the representatives into confidence regarding the Covid-19 situation in Mumbai.

"The corporators don't have complete information of the on-ground situation like how many beds are empty in hospitals and what is the status of oxygen stock and other important medicines, the information on BMC dashboard also appear outdated," said Raja.

"During the tenure of former municipal commissioner- Praveen Pardeshi, full transparency was maintained between the corporators and administration as significant information were exchanged between both parties, the same procedures needs to be restarted again," he added.

Raja's proposal was backed by all the other members and committee chairperson - Yashwant Jadhav directed the administration to keep the corporators updated with the daily proceedings of the administration.

During the meeting Jadhav also suggested that a strict timeline should be given to hospitals so that beds empty cannot be blocked for longer hours.

"In many cases we have found out that the patients didn't turn up at hospitals even after four-five hours of allocating the bed to them by the BMC war room, in this case the hospitals should be directed to allot the bed to the next waiting patient," said Jadhav.

The standing committee chairperson also maintained that in case of clearance emergency contracts like oxygen cylinders or Remdesivir, the administration shouldn't wait for the standing committee approval.

"During an emergency the administration can go ahead and purchase the products and can later table the proposal for post facto clearance, this will help in procuring the items earlier and will also maintain transparency amongst members," said Jadhav.

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