Terming D-ward as a VIP area that has to be kept clean round-the-clock, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has extended a 24-hour cleanliness service for the next two months without inviting tenders for renewal of contract. The proposal was passed by the standing committee of the civic body on Tuesday despite opposition. Some of the corporators also stated that the proposal has been presented because Municipal Commissioner Sitaram Kunte lives in the same area.
D ward comprises plush areas of South Mumbai including the Raj Bhavan, Kamala Nehru Park and the Babulnath Temple area. It also includes tony areas such as Cumbala and Malabar hills. The proposal states that there are seven tourist locations in the area, which is why it is important to always keep it clean.
Asif Zakaria, Congress coprorator said, “How can the administration bring such a proposal? Are we going to deploy more people to keep the area clean only because the commissioner lives there? And we are being forced to pass the proposal without even inviting tenders. If D ward has important lanes, then Bandra also has many commercial zones that needs to kept clean all through the day. This is completely wrong.”
According to the proposal, the service will be extended to a total of 18 streets which includes Peddar Road, Napean Sea Road, Bhulabhai Desai Marg, Walkeshwar Road, Altamount Road and BG Kher Marg among others.
With the earlier contract expiring on March 31, corporators also slammed the administration for tabling the Rs 18 lakh proposal at the last minute. Dilip Patel, BJP corporator said, “There are many touristic spots in the city apart from those in D ward. Will the administration keep bringing proposals that are meant only for the island city?”
Pallavi Darade, additional municipal commissioner, also in-charge of the solid waste management department said, “We will invite an expression of interest henceforth instead of extending the contracts. We will also consider the corporators’ requests for including all wards under the 24-hour cleanliness service.”