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Delhi: L-G writes to Kejriwal over North MCD funds

🔴 The recent strike by doctors and paramedical staff has affected the functioning of six major health institutions run by the North MCD, reads the letter.

Written by Abhinav Rajput | New Delhi |
Updated: December 16, 2021 8:13:19 am
Anil Baijal, Anil Baijal news, Delhi LG, Anil Baijal LG, Arvind Kejriwal, Arvind Kejriwal news, doctors strike, essential public services, North MCD, Delhi news, Delhi city news, New Delhi, India news, Indian Express News Service, Express News Service, Express News, Indian Express India NewsLt-Gen Anil Baijal with Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal in 2018. (Express photo by Abhinav Saha/File)

Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal has written a letter to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, requesting the release of Rs 328 crore to help the North MCD pay salaries to its employees, which can ensure uninterrupted delivery of essential public services.

The recent strike by doctors and paramedical staff has affected the functioning of six major health institutions run by the North MCD, reads the letter.

“It has been informed that while the 2021-2022 budget estimates for North MCD have been reduced by Rs 328.60 crore, additional financial liability on account of enhanced Dearness Allowance (Rs 240 crore) and pending salaries, pensions, etc (Rs 600 crore) has accrued resulting in present financial crisis”, he said in the letter written on December 2. In view of the above, the North MCD has requested at least Rs 328 crore, deducted as per revised estimates, be released urgently for immediate payment of pending salaries, pension, terminal benefits, to employees of the corporation to tide over the present crisis, it added.

More than 20 strikes have been held in the past five years by different sections of corporation workers. The BJP has blamed a dearth of funds on the AAP, saying it keeps corporations starved of funds and does not honour the arrangements of the finance commission. AAP leaders say the government has given its share to MCDs, and blame pending salaries on corruption in BJP-led corporations.

“I will be grateful if the above request of the North DMC for release of Rs 328 crore can be considered favourably in larger public interest to enable the corporation to make timely payment of salaries..,” the letter reads.

Standing committee chairperson of the North MCD Jogi Ram Jain, while sharing the letter, said that till date, they haven’t received the money and that it has affected the operation of the MCD.  Thousands of civic employees, mostly from the North MCD, went on an indefinite strike on Monday against non-payment of salaries and pension for the last three months. The strike was called off after assurances from leaders and payment of a month’s salary.

In its response to the letter, the Delhi government said they have already transferred all the funds owed to the three MCDs as per its constitutional obligations and “not even a single rupee” is held. “It’s the Centre that owes corporations Rs 12,000 crore. It gives grants to municipal corporations across the country, based on a formula of Rs 488 per person of the population. However, it has not paid grants to the three MCDs for last 17 years. Further, thousands of crores of property tax arrears are pending from central government agencies and for free advertisements on hoardings. MCDs can pay salaries by recovering these dues but isn’t doing so to extort and defame the Delhi government,” it said.

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