Paying no heed to civic administration’s call on austerity measures to handle financial crisis, elected representatives in the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) standing committee on Tuesday approved 16 library-cum-study centres and 10 recreation centres in the city.
The elected representatives have set aside Rs 25 lakh to set up library-cum-study centres in selected electoral wards.
“The elected representatives had put forth at least 25 proposals seeking training centres in their respective electoral wards. However, the standing committee decided to come up with library-cum-study centres instead of training centres. The project will be started in 16 selected electoral wards soon,” said Ashwini Kadam, Chairperson, standing committee.
The civic body had made a budgetary provision of Rs 4 crore to start training centres in every assembly segment for students preparing for UPSC and MPSC examinations. “The civic administration has been asked to identify civic schools in selected electoral wards to start library-cum-study centres. Besides renovating rooms at these schools, the PMC will also provide benches and book racks,” she said.
Earlier, the civic administration had expressed reluctance in setting up the training centres citing difficulty in maintaining the quality of training at these PMC-run centres. At present, the PMC runs a centre on Pune university campus which is used by reserved category students. However, the civic body has now decided to open the facility for open category students as well.
“The library-cum-study centre will be run by PMC. The criteria for allowing entry will be decided after the infrastructure is ready,” she said.
The committee also approved 10 recreation centres by setting aside Rs 5 lakh each. “The recreation centres are must in the city for senior citizens,” said Kadam.
Criticising the civic administration for issuing administrative orders on austerity measure and directing the municipal commissioner to withdraw it, Kadam said, “We have directed the civic administration to seek committee’s permission before deciding on the civic expenditure.”