Rane targets Sena over Mumbai not becoming world class city
Senior Congress leader Narayan Rane today took a dig at the Shiv Sena and the party controlled Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) over Mumbai lagging behind Singapore and Shanghai, which, he said became the world class cities in the last three decades.
Initiating a debate in the Legislative Council on a resolution moved by the Opposition on issues concerning Mumbai, the former chief minister said while Shanghai, Singapore, and Kuala Lumpur became the world class cities in the last 25-30 years Mumbai is lagging behind.
He said the BMC came into existence in 1856 and since then 152 years have been passed.
In a jibe aimed at the Sena which has been ruling the Mumbai civic body for over two decades now, Rane said, “Cities like Singapore, Shanghai and Kuala Lumpur rose to fame as the world class cities only in the last 25 to 30 years. But Mumbai, which came into existence 152 years ago, has not been able to progress into a world class city”.
Rane, who had served as a corporator early in his political career, said had the contemporary corporators been learned enough, they would not have allowed the BMC Commissioner to cut the capital expenditure in the annual civic budget.
“The surplus funds lying with the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) and the Rs 60,000 crore of the BMC that are lying in Fixed Deposits with the banks should be used to make Mumbai a world class city,” Rane said.
In order to develop Mumbai into a truly global city, the government should appoint an agency, give them three months time, he said, adding that World Bank, the Centre and the state governments could create a fund for the development of civic infrastructure.
Despite contributing 25 to 30 per cent by way of tax to the Central kitty, Mumbai’s condition continues to be pathetic, he added.
In an apparent reference to Sena president Uddhav Thackeray’s remarks suggesting that the BMC was helpless when it rains heavily in Mumbai, Rane said even if it rains 400 mm in a day, Central Mumbai gets water logged.
“Some parts of Mumbai are below the sea level. But why no steps have been taken to improve sewerage system and pumping stations?” he asked.
Taking potshots at Sena over its recent stand-off with RJ Malishka Mendonsa who mocked the civic body on various issues through a video, Rane said Mumbai is a 152-year-old city and over the years, new unbelievable technological innovations have been made.
“How could the BMC not search for new technologies to fix potholes on the roads over years?” he asked.
The senior Congress leader said why the road repair contracts were awarded to the same contractors who had been blacklisted.
The debate on the motion remained inconclusive.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)