The suspension of 12 BMC officials who were found guilty of lax performance in desilting of storm water drains last year, has been upheld by a review committee of the civic administration, an RTI query has revealed.
The officials were suspended by Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) after the civic body took strong action in the nullah-cleaning (desilting) scam and filed a case against seven contractors.
The crackdown was initiated by Municipal Commissioner Ajoy Mehta after an inquiry ordered by him revealed shoddy pre-monsoon work, which caused flooding in many parts of Mumbai after the first heavy rainfall in June 2015.
The RTI query filed by activist Anil Galgali had demanded a list of officers suspended by the BMC in the last five years, to which BMC furnished documents of the review committee meeting which decided on extending their suspension.
“The review meeting held on March 22, 2016 under the Chairmanship of Deputy Municipal Commissioner discussed the suspension of total 41 officers from various departments, which included suspension of 12 officers in the nullah cleansing work in September 2015.
Dy Municipal Commissioner Sudhir Naik continued the suspension of Chief Engineer of Vigilance Department Uday Murudgkar, Assistant Engineer Sudesh Gawali, Pradip Patil, Sanjeev Koli, Ramesh Patvardhan, Asst Engineer Rahul Parekh, Prashant Patel, Bhagwan Rane, Prafulla Wadnere, Sambhaji Bacchav, Naresh Poil and Mukadam Shantaram Korde,” reply to the RTI query said.
Mehta had suspended the SWD (Storm Water Drain) department staff ranging from Chief Engineer to a Mukadam in September 2015 for irregularities in the desilting of drains resulting in floods.
The suspension issue was placed before a review committee which rejected their appeal for reinstatement and has extended the suspension further, said Galgali.
The decision on these officers’ suspension should be taken forward quickly as they are getting 75 per cent of their salaries just by sitting at home. If they are dismissed from service permanently, it would work as a deterrent for others, he added.