Parties get ready to use draft DP as election ammohttps://indianexpress.com/article/cities/pune/parties-get-ready-to-use-draft-dp-as-election-ammo/

Parties get ready to use draft DP as election ammo

Opposition parties in the city are planning to leverage the draft development plan (DP),which they feel will go against citizens,to take them closer to votes during the Lok Sabha and Assembly polls next year.

Opposition parties in the city are planning to leverage the draft development plan (DP),which they feel will go against citizens,to take them closer to votes during the Lok Sabha and Assembly polls next year.

The draft DP had been running into controversies ever since it was tabled by the civic administration two years ago. The City Improvement Committee took around a year to clear the proposal. Thereafter came changes made to the draft DP in the general body after corporators recommended amendments that invited criticism from civic activists.

Opposition Shiv Sena and BJP have been the criticising the draft DP and alleging that the ruling NCP and Congress tuned the draft DP to fit in with their own agenda.

The MNS,which has seen its strength increase in the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) from 8 to 28,senses a good chance for their candidates in the 2014 Assembly and Lok Sabha elections and is planning to take advantage of provisions in the draft DP. MNS chief Raj Thackeray recently took the party corporators and office-bearers to task for not getting aggressive on public issues.

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“The MNS conducted a detailed study of the draft DP and would now go to voters to explain the development proposed in their respective areas. The meetings will be conducted in various parts of the city and the suggestions of citizens taken up for discussion with the PMC administration,” said MNS leader Bala Shedge.

“The DP will decide the development of the city for the next 20 years and citizens should know what is being done to meet their basic demands,” he said.

The Shiv Sena had alleged that the DP is engineered to suit real estate developers. The party said it will bring out provisions in the DP that the party feels would go against the interest of citizens. “We would make public the shortcomings in the DP. The citizens would be made aware of adverse impact of provisions in the draft DP,” said Sena leader Shyam Deshpande.

Under criticism for changing the provisions of draft DP,the NCP has started a study of the DP keeping in mind the larger interest of the public. NCP city chief Vandana Chavan too has been alleging that the green cover has been reduced in the draft DP and infrastructure development proposed at places where there are water bodies.

“Select members of the party would study the draft DP and submit a report to senior party leaders to decide the stand on the proposal,” said NCP leader Datta Dhankawade.

“There is a difference in opinion within the NCP and no one wants to take this forward until the elections next year. If the differences persist,it could affect performance in the elections. Also,opposition parties are likely to make it an election issue,” said an NCP leader.