October 10, 2021 12:53:25 am
THE BRIHANMUMBAI Municipal Corporation (BMC) is likely to submit a draft report of rectification of electoral ward boundaries before the state election commission (SEC) by next week. Officials from the BMC’s election department said that the process of delimitation or rectification of ward boundaries is almost over and not many changes are expected.
On August 25, SEC issued directions to 18 municipal corporations, including Mumbai, to start the process of delimitation of ward boundaries. State election body had told corporations to send draft reports as soon as possible.
Under the preparation, corporations are rectifying ward boundaries based on population, updating of voters list as per the wards, inclusion or exclusion of areas in wards based on the change in geography due to redevelopment, infrastructure developments like new road construction, bridges and slum rehabilitation projects.
The census was due this year, however, because of Covid-19, the enumeration did not take place.
Officials said that during the delimitation process it is ensured that the people living in the same area should have their names in the nearest polling booths. “In an electoral ward if the difference of population is more than 10% or reduced by 10% then we will go for delimitation. Therefore, we have asked our staff to collect all the data of addition or deletion of voters in the wards based on which boundaries will be decided,” said Suresh Kakani, Additional Municipal Commissioner.
“The draft report is almost completed and it is likely to be submitted by next week,” he said. After the report is submitted before SEC, further process of publishing the new ward boundaries and inviting suggestions and objections will be invited.
Mumbai has 227 electoral wards. According to the norms, the ratio of population in each electoral ward should be around 54,000. However, if the difference is 10% above and less than 10% then delimitation will take place.
Earlier, Congress had alleged manipulation in ward boundaries in 2017 by the then BJP government. Congress leader Ravi Raja had written a letter to the election commission alleging that BJP made changes in ward boundaries in at least 45 wards that benefited it. Shiv Sena had also alleged manipulation in electoral wards in 30 wards.
When asked about whether the civic body is also planning to change ward boundaries of these wards, an official from BMC’s election department said, “Not many changes are expected.”
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