A new rule for getting payments cleared has disheartened members of park management committees (PMCs) that help the Municipal Corporation in maintaining green belts.
According to the new rule,PMCs need to get the signatures of not only the area councillor but also of two councillors of the garden sub-committee in order to get their payments cleared from the corporation. Without signatures of three councillors,no payment will be made.
The order implementing the revised procedure was passed in the recently held Finance and Contract Committee meeting and PMC members were turned away when they took this months bills to get the payments.
S S Chana,member,Federation of Pollution and Park Management Committees,said: Does this mean that the area councillor is not competent enough to oversee the work of PMCs. Moreover,the new rule will cause harassment to the committee members who have to run around to get the signatures of three councillors. This rule was not notified when PMCs started functioning and former MC Commissioner Vikas Partap had promised us that payments will be made without any delay.
Executive member of the committee,Amrit Kaur Gill,said: The committees will soon lose interest in maintenance of parks because they cant go around looking for councillors to get clerical jobs done.
Of the total 750 parks in the city,nearly 500 are maintained by various PMCs. The smallest park covers an area of 116 square metre for which a PMC is paid Rs 116 per month while the highest payment is of Rs 5,000 per month.
H S Bilga,executive engineer,Horticulture department, said: I will request the mayor and commissioner not to impose the new condition on PMCs as this will prove to be a deterrent. Almost all PMCs are doing a good job and few members of Atam Park and the Model Town area had recently requested me to suggest landscaping in the local parks,for which they are ready to pay from their own pockets. Looking at their enthusiasm,we should encourage them.
MC Commissioner G S Ghuman,however,was surprised when Newsline asked him about the new rule in place. Even if such a decision has been taken,it will be reverted. I have spoken to the mayor in this context and we will instruct the staff to accept the bills with signatures of only the area councillor.