The big story this week is that finally, after a long long wait, the NMMC has approved its much awaited hoarding policy. One of the election promises of NCP, the hoarding policy that is officially called as the “Advertising Policy 2011”, is all set to plug the holes in the revenue loss caused due to a ring of advertising mafia.
For years the advertising mafia has been looting the NMMC treasury. Budget after budget the citizens have been witness to how under complete influence of a ring of advertising agencies in Navi Mumbai, the NMMC is looted from this source of revenue. Though the city has progressed and progressed and all forms of advertisements have tremendously increased, the hundreds of Crores revenue generated from these are pocketed by advertising agencies while not even 1% of this reaches the NMMC treasury. Not to forget how ugly the city skyline looks due to the haphazard manner in which advertisements are put up, at most places by advertising agencies and at the remaining spots by local politicians and private commercial houses. All this however, now will be a thing of the past because the ruling NCP has kept one of the crucial promises it had made during the elections – of giving the city a comprehensive advertising policy ! The policy approved by the NMMC General Body this week. Corporators across political parties welcomed the policy that has been biting dust in NMMC for over three years now. The policy was approved by the house of corporators and NMMC will now invite public suggestions and objections for it before sending it to the state for its final approval. A closer look at the draft of the advertising policy shows, that indeed the NMMC has done its homework on the policy. Sources reveal it was Thane Guardian Minister Ganesh Naik who personally guided the NMMC administration and NCP corporators to ensure that a comprehensive policy was drafted and approved by corporators. We bring to you some of the winning aspects of the policy.
• SKYLINE TO BECOME BEAUTIFUL…AGAIN !
The biggest relief that the advertising policy will bring is that the skylines of Navi Mumbai will become beautiful again. In accordance with the policy, not only will a committee finalize the places and spots where advertisements will be permitted but at the same time, the size of the advertisements too will be brought under certain parameters. Besides uniformity, even the number of hoardings, banners and posters will be regulated giving way to a beautiful skyline, cleaner roads, footpaths, public spaces and streets in the city ! The same was said by Mayor Sagar Naik.
• EXPERT COMMITTEE TO GIVE EXPERT ADVICE ON ADVERTISING SPOTS !
The NMMC will form a committee that will include engineers, traffic police, RTO officials, CIDCO planners, Dy. Collector, Railways, maritime board member, architect, structural engineer and other experts. This committee will be headed by the NMMC Commissioner and will decide the spots for advertising.
• ADVERTISING MAFIA OUT, REVENUE IN !
The other good news of the advertising policy for tax payers is that the advertising mafia will be shown the door. For decades, leading advertising agencies in Navi Mumbai have formed a ring and operated as an advertising mafia that never allowed any new players to enter the market and always bagged tenders that were hugely under quoted. However, the new hoarding policy is likely to break this ring and ensure that the hundreds of Crores that these advertising agencies have gobbled over the years will now reach the NMMC treasury. To ensure that revenue is collected from prime to ordinary location, the NMMC will come out with a catalogue with categories like A, B, C, D and the likes. These categories will be alphabetically assigned to prime location, main roads, inner sections of nodes and the likes; thereby ensuring the maximum revenue is tapped from advertisements. Speaking to NMTV News Deputy Editor Sana Warsia, Thane Guardian Minister Ganesh Naik informed the same.
• ADVERTISE NOW IN “TYPES” !
In order to ensure every form of advertisement comes under the purview of the corporation, the NMMC has divides them into 6 types.
a) The first is PERMANENT ADVERTISEMENTS that will include hoardings, gantry, Uni-ad poll, ad poll, Tri Vision uni poll, kiosks, foot over bridges, bus stop mini ad poll, signboards and skywalk ads.
b) The second type is TEMPORARY ADVERTISEMENTS that will include advertisements that are political, religious and social.
c) The third type is MOBILE ADVERTISEMENTS that will include mobile vans and other advertisements on wheels.
d) The fourth type is OTHER ADVERTISEMENTS that will include shops, offices, commercial establishments and industrial places.
e) The fifth type is BEAUTIFICATION SPOTS that will include gardens, playgrounds, dividers, chowks and other spots that come under NMMC’s beautification spots and are maintained mostly by private parties.
f) The last type is FUTURE ADVERTISEMENTS that has been left open for other types of advertisements that will enter the market in future.
• CONCESSIONS FOR POLITICAL, RELIGIOUS AND SOCIAL ADVERTISEMENTS
The policy will also give leverage of concessions to political advertisements of senior leaders and religious and social advertisements.
• BAN ON PUBLIC PLACES AND GOVERNMENT OFFICES
A blanket ban has been put on advertisements in public places, government offices, flex banners that are erected by damaging roads, sticker and posters, wall painting, advertisements on pipelines and the likes.
• COMMUNITY FRIENDLY ADVTERTISEMENTS ONLY
The policy also lays down strict rules for the kinds of advertisements that can be displayed. Accordingly only community and society friendly advertisements can be put up. No advertisements that promote violence, vulgarity, nudity, caste discriminating, women and child exploitation, lottery, liquor, cigarette, tobacco and the likes.
• REWARDS FOR COMPLAINTS AGAINST ILLEGAL HOARDINGS
In order to get citizen participation to successfully implement the policy, the NMMC will also give rewards to those who will complain against illegal hoardings. No points for guessing, the police has been drafted so well that residents cannot wait for its implementation. All unanimously welcome this new initiative of NMMC.
The skyline of your city will be beautiful again, footpaths and public spaces much cleaner, advertising mafia will be out and increase revenue will be in. Under Thane Guardian Minister’s dynamic leadership, the city finally has its very own comprehensive hoarding policy. In spirit, the policy is a winner all the way but the true success of it will be measured only when, under the NMMC Advertisement Policy 2011, advertising begins ! With bureau inputs, Sana Warsia for NMTV News.