THE Standing Committee meeting of the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) sought on Wednesday certain clarification from PMPML before extending financial assistance of Rs 6 crore. PMPML Joint Managing Director D P More, who was present at the meeting, sought two weeks’ time to make their submission before the panel. The PCMC standing committee was expecting PMPML Chairman and Managing Director Tukaram Mundhe to attend the meeting. However, Mundhe deputed his deputy to answer PCMC panel’s posers.
According to PCMC panel members, the senior official said he did not have full information and would make the submission within two weeks. The panel, therefore, decided to put on hold the financial assistance till the PMPML comes up with a ‘factfile’. Committee Chairperson Seema Savale said they were “disappointed”, as despite repeated requests, Mundhe could not make it to the meeting. “It is highly inappropriate for a senior official… to disregard a constitutional body like the PCMC Standing Committee,” she said.
Savale claimed that Mundhe had deputed an officer who landed with hardly any details. “For the last one month, we have been telling PMPML representatives about the facts and details needed to be put before us for extending financial assistance to PMPML. Yet… they turn up with little to show….this is just unacceptable…” she said. Every month, she added, PCMC pays Rs 7-and-a-half crore and PMC pays Rs 12-and-a-half crore to PMPML, as their share for operative loss.
“We are 40 per cent partners in the losses. But the PMPML services in PCMC areas are so deficient that we believe we have no reason to share such high percentage of operative costs,” she said. Claiming that PMPML buses’ connectivity in Pimpri-Chinchwad was dismal, she said, “PMPML argues that they cannot run on loss-making routes. This argument has no basis. Even if there are fewer commuters on a particular route, as a public undertaking, it is PMPML’s duty to ensure that they take care of those few commuters.”
On PMPML’s plan to buy 800 buses, Savale said, “We want to know how the buses will be allotted and who is going to share the operative loss.” Basically, she said, the panel wants to know the break-up of the losses and who is sharing how much. “This is very important because we feel we are spending more but are getting hardly anything in return, vis-a-vis better PMPML services. If commuters in Pimpri-Chinchwad are getting hardly anything, why should we pay them in crores?” she asked.