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Tuesday, October 20, 2020

BJP, opposition clash again over holding GB meeting to discuss Pune’s Covid situation

The opposition, led by NCP, Congress and Shiv Sena, had demanded a discussion on the spiralling Covid-19 cases in civic limits.

By: Express News Service | Pune | Updated: September 23, 2020 10:42:52 am
pune city news, pune municipal corporation, pune civic body budget shortage, pune budget crisisAt a Covid-19 testing centre in Pune. (Express file photo by Arul Horizon)

The ruling BJP in the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) on Tuesday again refused to convene a general body meeting to hold a discussion on the pandemic situation, saying the state government has not given permission to hold such a meeting in person. The opposition, led by NCP, Congress and Shiv Sena, had demanded a discussion on the spiralling Covid-19 cases in civic limits.

A general body meeting was held on Monday, with some corporators attending it in person and others attending it online. But when Mayor Murlidhar Mohol asked a BJP corporator to speak, the corporator faced some technical problems and the mayor adjourned the meeting without holding any discussions.

Leader of the House Dheeraj Ghate said a 100 per cent in-person general body meeting can’t be held as the state government has not given permission for it. “It will be wrong to disrespect the decision of the state government and take up a discussion,” he said.

BJP leader Srinath Bhimale said opposition party corporators should seek specific directions from the state government on allowing discussions in general body meetings.

The stance of BJP corporators, however, drew flak from all three opposition parties. Congress corporator Avinash Bagwe accused the ruling BJP of “running away” instead of responding to the issue. “More and more Pune residents are getting infected with Covid-19… people have the right to question the PMC on the issue,” he said.

Bagwe said while residents were facing issues pertaining to lack of oxygen supply and medicines for critical patients, those in power in the PMC were avoiding any discussions on it.

Shiv Sena leader Prithviraj Sutar said BJP corporators should read the communication of the state government properly instead of citing absurd reasons. “The state government has directed to hold a general body meeting via video-conferencing so that members can attend it from wherever they want. The government has not give any instructions on not holding discussions and if they (the BJP) want to hold it through video-conferencing, then they should proceed and allow members to attend it…,” he said.

NCP leader Vishal Tambe said the ruling party should not ignore the demands of members to hold discussions on important issues pertaining to the city, while Congress leader Ulhas Bagul said the BJP should pass a resolution that they will hold discussions in the general body meeting only when they wish to do so.

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