Just two months ahead of monsoon, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) will table a Rs 200-crore desilting proposal before the standing committee on Wednesday. The proposal includes cleanliness and maintenance of rivers, major and minor drains across the island city, eastern and western suburbs for the next two years.
Senior officials confirmed that the work will begin within seven days after the proposal has been passed by the standing committee. While 60 per cent of the work will be completed before the onset of monsoon in June, another 20 per cent is expected to be completed after the monsoon begins, a senior official confirmed.
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Devendra Amberkar, opposition leader and congress corporator said, “Usually, the proposals are tabled in March and the work orders issued by the end of the same month. The corporation has already delayed the process by
Desilting became a major issue last monsoon after corporators blamed the administration for shoddy work leading to flooding in major areas in the city. This year too, corporators have complained that the proposal has been tabled quite late by the administration. Meanwhile, Sena corporators Shubha Raul and Sheetal Mhatre on Monday announced a new project for cleaning-up the Dahisar river. The corporators have roped in expert consultants and NGOs for clearing the pollutants in the river. Raul said, “Every year, BMC spends crores on the clean-up but the river continues to be filled with pollutants. These experts have worked on river cleaning projects and approached us recently.” Raul has already sent a letter to Municipal Commissioner Sitaram Kunte regarding the project, the funds for which will be raised by local NGOs, Raul said.
The ex-mayor has also involved the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI) to conduct a study on the kind of pollutants affecting the water body that will help the consultants in their work. “We should get the report from NEERI in another 10 days,” Raul confirmed.