Pune: District collector writes to SEC, seeks guidance on development projects ahead of municipal polls

As per the Election Commission guidelines, a district with more than four municipal councils going to elections will see application of the code of conduct for the entire district.

By: Express News Service | Pune | Published:October 19, 2016 12:37 am
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Pune district, which includes both rural and urban areas, may see a setback in development work ahead of the municipal council elections and district collector Saurabh Rao has written to the state election commission office seeking guidelines on the same.

As per the Election Commission guidelines, a district with more than four municipal councils going to elections will see application of the code of conduct for the entire district. With the code of conduct in place from Monday, a whole lot of queries have risen regarding the ongoing and upcoming projects.

“I have written to the Election Commission and they have promised us to give proper guidelines for what projects can be allowed or those that have to stopped. While it is clear that no new work can be given a go ahead, already sanctioned work and those that need ‘inaugurations’ or ‘bhoomi pujan’ may not be allowed. However, we expect a reply from the commission to be clear on the same,’’ collector Saurabh Rao said.

In the district too, only 40 per cent funds have been utilised, so the remaining funds’ utilisation will have to be checked, he added.

The State Election Commission (SEC) on Monday formally announced polls to 212 municipal councils across Maharashtra. Touted as a “mini- Assembly poll”, the election to Nagar Parishads and Nagar Panchayats will be conducted in four phases between December and February. Following the nagar parishad elections, there will be corporation elections too. Of the total 192 Nagar Parishads and 20 Nagar Panchayats, elections to 165 in 25 districts will be conducted on November 27. Elections to 14 parishads and pachayats in Pune and Latur will be held on December 14; 22 parishads and panchayats in Aurangabad, Nanded, Bhandara and

Gadchiroli on December 18; and 11 parishads and panchayats in Nagpur and Gondia on January 8.The counting for all phases will be carried out the day after the poll. Of the 212 municipal councils, in 192 voters will directly elect council presidents.

Earlier this month, Maharashtra State Election Commissioner JS Saharia had announced that elected representatives of the local self-governing bodies cannot utilise discretionary funds for development works three months ahead of their tenure’s end, or from the date of announcement of the election schedule, whichever is earlier.