Under criticism for its intention to recover user charges from residents for the smart services to be provided under Smart City Mission, the Pune Smart City Development Corporation Ltd (PSCDCL) has sought revenue share from the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) in place of incurring user charges from residents for operation and maintenance of smart projects.
The PSCDCL had proposed around 50 projects under the smart city mission. As per the guidelines of the Smart City Mission, the special purpose vehicle to be set up for the development of smart city would have the powers to recover user charges from residents for the operation and maintenance of smart services.
There have been opposition to the plans of recovering user charges from the residents. So, the PSCDCL has come up with a proposal to compensate for it. In its proposal, the PSCDCL has proposed the share of 15 per cent of the building construction charges collected by the PMC in the Aundh, Baner and Balewadi areas to be developed under smart city mission.
The PSCDCL has also sought the share of 10 per cent of property tax collected by the PMC from the area and one percent of the stamp duty and registration charges collected by state government on property dealings in the area. The proposal of PSCDCL has come as a shock to PMC as the civic body itself is struggling to implement its budget and has estimated a shortage of around Rs 1,744 crore in its targetted revenue collection, leading to introducing at least 45 per cent cut in the expenditure of civic infrastructure projects.
The PMC had to face the impact of slowdown in the real estate market and was expecting a revenue collection of Rs 413 crore as against the target of Rs 1,165 crore from building permission charges.
On the other hand, the PSCDCL has been able to complete six of the 53 projects it had proposed in the plan under Smart City Mission. In the performance review for the first half of 2017, it indicates that 90 per cent of projects are yet to start. “The PSCDCL has failed to deliver results. Its performance is very poor as most of its projects are yet to be launched,” said Chetan Tupe, director in PSCDCL and opposition leader in the PMC.
He said that the ruling BJP deliberately postponed the meeting of the board of directors of PSCDCL as they were confident that the opposition parties were going to take on the administration for the failure in implementation of smart city projects and demand to seek a share of PMC revenues.