Ghaziabad: The councillor of Shipra Sun City of Indirapuram, Sanjay Singh, threatened to move the court if the Ghaziabad Municipal Corporation (GMC) does not expedite takeover of Indirapuram by the Ghaziabad Development Authority (GDA).
Tension has been simmering between the GMC and Indirapuram councillors over delay in transfer of the maintenance for quite some time even though the councillors of the area are unanimous on immediate transfer of the area to GMC.
"A lot of development work is pending due to this technicality. I can't work for the people who have chosen me because the area is still not under my direct jurisdiction. It's embarrassing to collect tax yet not be able to work for the taxpayers only because the area is still not under the jurisdiction of the GMC. I'm truly disappointed," bemoaned Sanjay Singh.
Indirapuram is currently being looked after by the GDA. The process of handover has been pending for more than seven years now.
Talks on the transfer of the area to the GMC had first started in 2013 but soon fizzled out only to be reconciled in 2018. The process finally started with both the civic bodies constituting committees to expedite it. However, the inability of the civic bodies to arrive at a consensus on the process has kept pushing the transfer to date.
As the authorities are unable to work in tandem the development of the area is hampered.
They charge over Rs 40 crore in tax per annum from the residents of Indirapuram. Of which, only Rs 8 crore is spent, that too, by the GDA alone.
As per estimates, the GMC collects Rs 12 crore in house tax while the GDA collects Rs 24 crore in sewer and water taxes. While the GDA spends the revenue earned through the taxes on maintenance, the amount the GMC collects goes unused. This is when 44% of the residents don't pay house tax to the GMC.
Meanwhile, Singh told CitySpidey that a joint technical committee was constituted three months ago consisting of executive engineers of the GMC and the GDA for inspection of the residential colonies of Indirapuram.
The committee found the colonies riddled with uneven drains, waterlogging in many areas and sewerage overflow. "The committee members from the GMC said that these issues are serious. The corporation demanded a report on these issues from the GDA. The GDA has not yet responded. This has cast the matter to the back-burner," Singh recounted.
A GDA official told CitySpidey that the authority had offered a proposal to the GMC. "The authority told the GMC to start taking over the services that they find appropriate in their judgement. We clearly told them (the GMC) that the services that it is not satisfied with can be maintained by us till they become satisfactory to it," he said.
However, the GMC didn't agree to the proposal. Singh says the residents of Indirapuram are paying for the lack of understanding between the two civic bodies. "I'm not left with no option but to go to court if the matter is not resolved soon," Singh concluded.