Cor­po­ra­tors ne­glect civic is­sues: Study

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - FRONT PAGE - HT Cor­re­spon­dent ht­[email protected]­dus­tan­times.com

MUM­BAI: You may be trou­bled by the state of roads, con­tam­i­nated water and over­flow­ing drains, but the city’s cor­po­ra­tors are far more in­ter­ested in re­nam­ing roads than sort­ing civic is­sues in their ar­eas, re­veals a study con­ducted by the not-for-profit Praja Foun­da­tion, based on in­for­ma­tion col­lected be­tween March and De­cem­ber 2012 through Right to In­for­ma­tion queries.

While Mumbaiites made 92,714 com­plaints about civic ser­vices, their cor­po­ra­tors asked just 672 ques­tions in ward com­mit­tee meet­ings, of which 127 per­tained to re­nam­ing roads.

The find­ings show the deep di­vide be­tween cit­i­zen’s con­cerns and those raised by their elected rep­re­sen­ta­tives. “Th­ese find­ings re­flect a grave trend. Cor­po­ra­tors have been voted to power so that they ad­dress im­me­di­ate and lo­cal con­cerns of the elec­torate. In­stead, they are look­ing at triv­ial is­sues such as re­nam­ing roads and ig­nor- ing civic griev­ances,” said Ni­tai Me­hta, Praja’s founder trustee.

There have been 29,852 cit­i­zen com­plaints about poor roads in the 10- month pe­riod, but cor­po­ra­tors have asked just 100 ques­tions on the con­di­tion of roads dur­ing the same pe­riod. Sim­i­larly, as against the 16,194 griev­ances about drainage fa­cil­i­ties, only 31 ques­tions have been raised about the drainage sys­tem.

This is the first such sur­vey to be con­ducted af­ter the civic elec­tions in Fe­bru­ary 2012, and sug­gests that the pri­or­i­ties of the newly elected cor­po­ra­tors are not in tune with their elec­torate’s.

RE­LATED RE­PORTS, P2

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