After an unsuccessful meeting with Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday, the city’s municipal corporations are now in a difficult position. According to the mayors of North, South and East corporations, while refusing grants to the corporations, the CM asked the BJP-led civic bodies to seek financial help from the Centre.
However, in a meeting with East corporation officials in February, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh had refused to intervene in matters of the municipal corporations.
North and East corporations have been reeling under severe financial crisis and the mayors met the CM to discuss a possible bailout from the Delhi government.
“We are struggling to pay salaries and run schemes. It is critical that the corporations are helped in emerging from the current crisis,” North Delhi mayor Yogendra Chandolia said.
Citing the Delhi government’s own financial constraints, Kejriwal asked the mayors to seek funds from the finance ministry, “so that the government could release funds to the corporations”.
East corporation mayor Meenakshi said, “We tried to explain our predicament to the chief minister. Besides stalling our developmental projects, the lack of funds is also affecting our key functions such as upkeep of the city and dispersal of pensions. We need an immediate grant of Rs 800 crore. The Centre has already said ‘no’ to this. Whatever funds we need have to come from the Delhi government.”
The South corporation has also sought Rs 3,150 crore for regularisation of daily-wage employees. mayor Khushi Ram Chunar said planned schemes such as multi-level parking lots, roads, schools, community centres and bridges are taken up by the corporation, but the Delhi government has not released funds on time, leading to delay in projects and delivery of services.