With most councillors staying away from a discussion on MCD budget provisions,Mayor Rajni Abbi on Thursday decided to cut short the discussion duration from the scheduled six days to just three. There were red faces all around and officials blamed the poor attendance to the preoccupation of councillors with approaching elections to the three proposed corporations.
The decision to cut short the discussion was taken after consultations with Leader of the House Subhash Arya and Leader of Opposition Jai Kishan Sharma. On Thursday,the second day of the budget discussion,less than one-third of the councillors turned up around 80 of 272 councillors.
Women councillors,whose numbers are likely to account for half the House strength in the new bodies,too did a no-show. Only 25 women were present for the budget discussion.
After the lunch break,the total number of councillors fell to 50. Some were spotted taking pictures of each other while others chose to talk party matters and didnt tire praising their leaders.
A majority of the councillors are skipping the meeting because these discussions are just a formality, a senior member said. Others said some were upset that they had lost their wards to seat reservation. These councillors are busy working in wards from where they hope to be nominated They are spending time on the field,either inspecting wards or inaugurating projects, another member said.
BJP councillor Malti Verma,meanwhile,recommended a proposal to make attendance at budget discussions compulsory. Councillors are wondering about the seats they will get,and are not taking the discussion seriously. Everyone must be here to decide the budgetary provisions.