The municipal standing committee last week approved the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s budget estimates for 2018-19, with some additional infrastructure projects including a stadium, a football academy and a drama museum. Municipal Commissioner Ajoy Mehta had presented a Rs 27,278 crore budget for 2018-19 to standing committee chairman Ramesh Korgaonkar of the Shiv Sena. The budget was approved with an additional Rs 550 crore.
The additions include a Rs 1 lakh provision for an international standard stadium, Rs 25 lakh for a cricket and football academy and Rs 10 lakh for a theme park proposed at the Mahalaxmi Race Course. Additional budgetary provisions were also made to promote Marathi — a scholarship of Rs 1 lakh for those opting for a PhD in Marathi, and Rs 25 lakh for cultural events such as Marathi Sahitya Sammelan and Marathi Natya Sammelan.
An official said, “Budgetary provisions have been made for women, for widows of those who died from AIDS and for homeless children. Widows of AIDS victims will avail financial help for which a budgetary provision of Rs 10 lakh has been made. The standing committee has proposed a school-on-wheels project for homeless children for which a budgetary provision of Rs 1 lakh has been proposed.”
In a first, there is also a budgetary provision to support the education of children conceived as a result of rape. “The budget estimates approved by the standing committee include many projects that are people friendly. It offers financial support to single woman, women self-help groups, women who lost their husbands to AIDS, homeless children and children of rape victims. I think the budget for 2018-19 is complete,” said senior Shiv Sena corporator and member of the standing committee Rajul Patel.