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UNKEPT PROMISES, UNKEPT CITY

The latest civic budget presented by the civic chief is the same budget as last year, akin to “old wine in new bottle”. There is little that is new in the budget to please the Mumabaikar. Last year, the MCGM had made provisions for a series of projects, much of which remain unspent. This time too, his budget for 2009-10 is full of plans with little to say how they will be accomplished. Take a look at some of these projects : HERITAGE WALK The MCGM failed to start the heritage walk programme, for which it had allocated Rs. 2 Crore last year. The MCGM is providing Rs. 1 Crore for it this year. GARBAGE COLLECTION The MCGM had declared that garbage bins would “vanish” from the roads. It approved a cleanliness and sanitation law, making it compulsory to segregate wet and dry garbage, and which was to be collected from door-to-door. The MCGM has miserably failed on this front. PUMPING STATIONS To avoid the Mumbaikar’s nightmare of water-logged streets during the monsoons, the Chitale Committee had last year recommended building four new pumping stations at Worli, Haji Ali, Versova and Irla Nala. The MCGM could start work only at Haji Ali and Irla Nala. CRAWFORD MARKET The MCGM had proposed the makeover of the Crawford Market building and allocated Rs. 5 Crore in its last year’s budget. But little came of the proposal and the Rs. 5 Crore has been re-allocated. UNDERGROUND PARKING To overcome the problem of traffic congestion, the MCGM has decided to develop underground parking lots below the land reserved for recreation/playground and development plan roads. The budgetary provision for the same is Rs. 50 crore. EDUCATION It is proposed to start two junior colleges in science and a provision of Rs. 3 Crore has been made. To ensure cleanliness in the schools, housekeeping activities will be outsourced. Girls will receive Re. 1 per day of attendance, which will be distributed every three months. WATER The dream of 24/7 water supply continues. A programme to detect, and arrest, leakages to save water will be made. To promote the judicious use of water, the telescopic rate system will continue. HEALTH To lure the middle classes to municipal hospitals, a pilot project is being undertaken to set up a maternity and children hospital along the lines of private nursing homes. This will come up at Borivili East and where the cost will be Rs. 500 for deliveries and Rs. 50 per day for a bed for children. CITY BEAUTIFICATION Madame Tussauds comes to Mumbai! The MCGM is providing Rs. 5 crore to build a wax museum in the city. Neglected city beaches will be beautified. A cycle track will be developed at a cost of Rs. 5 Crore along the Irla Nullah by providing 2 meters wide pathway.

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