Kamlesh Khaturani and Rajesh Nagdev, citizen activists
Kamlesh Khaturani and Rajesh Nagdev, citizen activists
FPJ Photo

Thane: Two citizens from Ulhasnagar on Tuesday went on a hunger strike against the appointment of one of the civic officers from the Encroachment Department of Ulhasnagar Municipal Corporation (UMC).

The protestors, who were holding the strike, claimed that Ganesh Shimpi, the appointed assistant commissioner at UMC, is a corrupt officer originally deployed as the stenographer, but has been now appointed as the assistant commissioner, which is against the norms.

Kamlesh Khaturani and Rajesh Nagdev are the names of the citizens activists from Ulhasnagar who have put forth the demand to suspend Shimpi, the UMC official, from his post.

"Ganesh Shimpi was caught taking a bribe of Rs 25,000 while he was working as a stenographer at the Encroachment Department of the UMC. The official was arrested for this crime by the Anti-Corruption Department following his suspension, said Khaturani.

He added, "According to the governement norms, such officers are not supposed to be appointed for executive positions. However, even after his record as a corrupt officer and being in controversies for permitting illegal constructions, he was given two important executive charges of assistant commissioner and controller of illegal constructions by the UMC commissioner. Following the same, we are holding this hunger strike," said Khaturani.

The strike was held by both the citizens at Azad Maidan in Mumbai's CSMT from December 16. The letter was written by the protesters to the UMC commissioner and the state government.

"Taking the note of the strike, UMC commissioner Dr Raja Dayanidhi issued the order for Shimpi's suspension from the position of controller of illegal constructions. However, we will continue the strike unless he is being suspended from the other charge of assistant commissioner. Besides the same, Shimpi is not even educationally certified to hold the aforementioned important charges" added Khaturani.

According to the UMC, following the strike, the official has been suspended from the post of controller of illegal constructions.

"Shimpi, who was appointed as a stenographer, has been suspended from the position of controller of illegal constructions. As per the record, he was caught while taking a bribe in 2013. At present, he is holding the charges of assistant commissioner, but the demand has been put forth for his suspension from the above position. However, the final decision on the same will be announced by the UMC commissioner following the inquiry," said Dr Yuvaraj Bhadane, public relations officer at UMC.

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