After NCP says no, corporators look at state
Ruling party of NMMC rejects Rs8,000- crore proposal, claiming special purpose vehicle will render corporators powerless
CBD BELAPUR: Even as the satellite city gears up to become a smart city, the Rs8,000 crore project seems to have received a major setback.
In the special general body meeting of Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation ( NMMC) on Tuesday, the ruling Nationalist Congress Party (NMMC) rejected the smart city proposal.
The NCP has claimed that the provision of special purpose vehicles ( SPV) for planning and implementation of the smart city project will leave the corporators with little role to play.
Standing committee chairperson Netra Shirke said, “According to the central government’s plan, the SPV will be an autonomous body with the right to develop the notified area. It will have the financial and administrative control over the city. This sidelining of the local self government is a blow to democracy.”
While the decision by the NCP is being considered a death knell for the project, municipal commissioner Dinesh Waghmare said the NMMC had only sought a conceptual sanction and the final decision lies with the state government.
“The final composition of the SPV and the detailed project report would have come after we got selected in the race. Tuesday’s sanction would have allowed us to be in the race unhindered,” said Waghmare. “While the approval of the general body is a condition for qualification in the race, we are still not out of it as the state government’s directive is final. The state can give direction to NMMC accordingly.”
Waghm are said ,“On December 5 we had submitted our proposal to the state. The state has to evaluate it and then submit to the central govern- ment by December 15. It is now for the state government to take a decision.”
Waghmare said, “The SPV will be headed by a chairman, who in Maharashtra is expected to be the municipal commissioner. The managing director could be a private individual and not necessarily a government representative. The board of directors would comprise of representatives of government of India and Maharashtra.”
Meanwhile, t he opposition has alleged that the NCP rejected the proposal as there was no financial gain for the ruling party.
Opposition l eader Vijay Chougule said, “We will go to the chief minister and get directives from him to overrule the decision.”
S h iv Sena corporator Kishore Patkar said, “This is cheap politics. This is all about not getting commissions from the projects as they will not be brought to the standing committee and general body for approval.
BJP MLA Manda Mhatre said that she will raise the issue in the assembly if permitted by the speaker.
Navi Mumbai is among the 10 cities shortlisted in the state for the smart city project.
The NMMC had held several public meetings, awareness campaigns and competitions in its bid to be in the first ten cities to be selected for the project. It had received over 4 lakh suggestions from residents.