Ludhiana MC’s General House meet: 3,500 sanitation workers to be regularised, ward delimitation in doldrums - Hindustan Times
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Ludhiana MC’s General House meet: 3,500 sanitation workers to be regularised, ward delimitation in doldrums

By, Ludhiana
Oct 05, 2022 03:23 AM IST

During the six-and-a-half-hour General House meeting of the Ludhiana MC, city councillors and legislators from found themselves at loggerheads on varying issues — including regularisation of contractual staff

The municipal corporation’s (MC) General House, in a Tuesday meeting marred by heated arguments and ruckus, approved the resolution to regularise jobs of 3,542 contractual sweepers and sewermen among other major policy decisions.

City councillors and legislators were involved in heated arguments during the Ludhiana MC’s General House meeting at Guru Nanak Bhawan. (Gurpreet Singh/HT)
City councillors and legislators were involved in heated arguments during the Ludhiana MC’s General House meeting at Guru Nanak Bhawan. (Gurpreet Singh/HT)

During the six-and-a-half-hour meeting, city councillors and legislators from different parties found themselves at loggerheads on varying issues — including regularisation of contractual staff, the payment of salary to staff deputed without the House’s approval, payment to be made to gaushalas.

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Uncertainty prevails over the city’s ward delimitation survey ahead of municipal elections. The resolution to pay salaries to survey staff was also put on hold by the House. The process was taken up on the directions of the state government to rejig ward boundaries. Currently, there are 95 wards in the city.

A stormy session

Congress councillor Mamta Ashu and Ludhiana West Gurpreet Gogi of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) sparred over irregularities in the list of employees soon after the resolution to regularise the jobs of 3,542 contractual sweepers and sewermen was tabled.

The MC committee had found 88 ‘dead’, long-absent employees in the lists tabled in the House’s July meeting, resulting in a revised list of employees being tabled on Tuesday.

Seeking action against officials responsible for the mix-up, Ashu said the lists had not been signed by councillors who were part of the committee to re-verify the lists even as Gogi pushed for approval of the agenda.

The resolution was eventually approved with a condition that councillors will check the lists of the employees in their respective wards after a prolonged stand-off. It was noted that any anomalies found should result in action against the official concerned.

Councillors from different parties were seen essentially trying to hog credit for the step to regularise employees in view of the municipal elections.

Meanwhile, councillors from the state’s opposition parties — Congress, Shiromani Akali Dal , Bharatiya Janata Party and Lok Insaaf Party came down heavily on AAP legislators when the resolution to sanction 1.56 crore salary for the staff deployed for ward delimitation was tabled.

Asserting that the resolution not be approved, councillors said the staff had been deployed by the AAP-led state government without getting the consent of the House. AAP legislators including Madan Lal Bagga, Gogi, and others, however, pressed for the approval of the resolution — which, given the stiff opposition, has been kept on hold. Notably,

MC officials have not been able to move forward with the survey as their salaries have not yet been approved.

Resolutions await state’s stamp

Mayor Balkar Sandhu said the approved resolutions will now be sent to the state government for final approval. While committees were formed to look into other resolutions including formation of anti-encroachment committee, e-auction of abandoned properties among others

24x7 surface water supply project

Required approvals were given to push forward the World Bank-funded 24x7 surface water supply project and flat tenders under the project. Resolutions included approval for setting up demo zones in the city, setting up a water treatment plant in Bilga village. The 3,200-cr project to supply treated water from Sidhwan canal to the city aims to save ground water.

Building branch clearance on TS1 certificate

After much hue and cry over the MC’s recent decision to make building branch clearance mandatory for availing TS1 certificate (NOC), the House made changes in the resolution. Going forward, only a unique identification number will be issued against the property on the spot and building branch’s clearance will not be mandatory.

Penalty on single-use plastic

The house also approved a resolution to impose a penalty ranging from 2,000 to 20,000 against the use and trade of single-use plastic items, which have been banned by the state.

Resolutions await state’s stamp

Mayor Balkar Sandhu, meanwhile, said the resolutions approved by the House will now be sent to the state government for final approval.

While committees were formed to look into other resolutions including formation of anti-encroachment committee, e-auction of abandoned properties among others

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