Ahead of the Delhi Assembly elections scheduled later this year, all the three BJP-led municipal corporations seem to have gone into election mode. In a move aimed at creating pressure on the ruling Congress Government, two of the three corporations have released most of the annual development funds that are to be allocated to the councillors.
The South Delhi Municipal Corporation at its first meeting decided to release Rs.1.30 crore for every ward under the councillor fund with immediate effect. The decision was taken by the newly-elected Chairman of the committee Rajesh Gehlot at the first meeting of the Standing Committee of SDMC on Monday. The corporation has also released pension for six months, so that citizens can be benefited in a time-bound manner. North Delhi Municipal Corporation last week decided to release Rs.1 crore of the councillor fund in one instalment.
The decision to clear the amount of the councillor fund in one instalment was taken to ensure that councillors can start maximum development projects before the model code of conduct comes into force. The usual practice is that the Corporations release councillor funds in instalments of Rs.50 lakh to Rs.40 lakh at a time. “We want that the councillors should not face any problem in the developmental works in their area as far as money is concerned,” Mr. Gehlot said while addressing the standing committee. The move assumes significance, since, hoping to get a ticket for the Assembly elections, several councillors want to impress the party leadership through the development works in their respective areas.
Leader of the House Subhash Arya said the councillors want to expedite development process in their respective wards.
“We have told our councillors to complete as many development projects as they can. The Commissioner has assured his full cooperation in this regard. So we will clear their proposals as soon as they are ready ,” he added, during his first speech in the committee.