AAP leader and MCD in-charge Durgesh Pathak Wednesday alleged that the BJP-ruled North MCD has waived Rs 2,457 crore that the South MCD was supposed to pay as rent for office space.
He said MCD employees were not getting salaries as a result of corruption, incompetence and financial mismanagement in the civic bodies, evoking a sharp reaction from the BJP.
The issue of ownership of Civic Centre, the corporation’s headquarters which houses North and South offices, has been a longstanding issue between the two.
In 2016, it led to sealing of the office of SDMC commissioner’s personal secretary by North MCD officials.
The North MCD claims it is the rightful owner of the 28-storey Civic Centre and the SDMC is a tenant, which owes rent and licensing fee due since 2012.
Pathak said officials and the commissioners of the North MCD have written several letters to the South MCD asking for the money but in vain. “Yesterday the North MCD presented the budget of this year. It is unfortunate that in this document there is no mention of this huge amount which is due from the South MCD,” he said.
“If SDMC pays this money, then for one year the North MCD will not face any kind of financial issues and salaries of the employees can be cleared,” he said.
North MCD Mayor Jai Prakash said Pathak was making claims on the basis of a budget which has not been finalised.
“The budget presentation is termed final when the standing committee head gives approval. Right now just the commissioner has placed the budget, which is not final,” he said.
Pathak also said that if AAP comes to power in the MCD, it will investigate all such matters and hold officials accountable.
Delhi BJP spokesperson Praveen Shankar Kapoor called Pathak’s allegations frivolous. “If he is so worried about municipal employees’ pending salaries, he should ensure communication between the Chief Minister and mayors of the three civic bodies on dharna outside his home.”
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