PCMC corporators have expressed fears that their existence has come under threat after the launch of the Sarathi helpline centre by the civic administration.
At the standing committee meeting held Tuesday,chairman Navnath Jagtap said corporators have been airing their grievances and demands at divisional,standing committee and civic general body meetings. He said officers do not care when corporators complain about some deficiency in civic services. Officials who are present at these meetings do not take cognisance of complaints made by corporators. In such a case,corporators have no alternative but to approach the commissioner. If this continues,then citizens will refuse to approach corporators. Our very existence will come under threat… said Jagtap.
Jagtap said the newly launched Sarathi helpline centre has further reduced their importance. Citizens in a ward used to come to corporators with complaints regarding shortage of water,lack of cleanliness and drainage problems. These days,they are directly calling Sarathi helpline. Citizens are beginning to avoid corporators. There are clear indications that Sarathi has reduced the importance of corporators, he said.
However,civic activists said Sarathi has not reduced the importance of corporators,but increased the importance of citizens. Earlier citizens had to make rounds to meet corporators,who were not available most of the time. Therefore,citizens are no more at their mercy. They just need to pick up the phone, said Kannan Nambiar,an activist.
Chetan Morwal,a resident of Wakad,said he needed information for setting up a hotel. I ran around,but did not get the correct information. Even the architect did not provide me with adequate information. I called up Sarathi helpline and they directed me to the right department from where I got what I needed, he said.