In a recent statement, Congress state vice-president and former MLA, Mohan Joshi, criticized the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led Pune Municipal Corporation for its handling of the Smart City scheme.
Mohan Joshi said, "Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the Smart City scheme eight years ago, on June 25, 2016, with a grand advertisement ceremony. However, despite the BJP coming to power in Pune Municipal Corporation for five consecutive years starting in 2017, no significant progress has been made under this scheme."
Joshi further alleged that there was a scam involving crores of rupees in the tendering process for the works.
Joshi specifically questioned the selection of the "already developed Baner Balewadi area" as the focus of the scheme. He challenged the BJP to publicly disclose their accomplishments in Baner Balewadi and explain the tangible benefits brought to the residents of Pune.
The flagship mission, which involves the development of 100 cities into smart cities will end in 2024.
BJP has a history of making false promises: Joshi
Joshi further criticized the BJP and said it has a history of making false promises and failing to deliver. He urged the party to provide a transparent account of Pune's progress under the Smart City scheme or publicly admit that it was a hollow election pledge.
The Congress representative highlighted several issues faced by Pune residents, including incomplete projects, poorly maintained roads, and visually unappealing advertising of electric poles installed at intersections. Joshi argued that these outcomes demonstrated the scheme's failure to benefit the city.
Accusing the BJP of reneging on development promises and undermining local self-government, Joshi pledged that the people of Pune would respond to these shortcomings in the upcoming elections. He assured the public of the Congress party's continued support.