Ahead of the MCD elections, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and the Chief of the Aam Aadmi Party announced that if AAP comes to power in the MCD elections, they will bring in the 'Janta Chalegi MCD' scheme. Under this, RWA will be given the status of mini councillor. Along with this, financial assistance will also be given to RWAs for their office and public works.
CitySpidey reached out to some RWAs in Dwarka to capture their reactions.
General secretary of RWA, Sector 3 Pocket 16, Devesh Mundepi says that the announcement by CM Delhi Arvind Kejriwal is encouraging. He says that such a move if implemented would bring a positive change in the direction of the welfare of residents. In his words, “The RWA of Adarsh Apartment Sector 3, Pocket 16, Dwarka, welcome this announcement of CM Arvind Kejriwal. If implemented, this scheme will be very beneficial to the society at large in Delhi as their dependencies on MCD elected councillors would reduce. As we all know that government spending was never properly done in past. Some localities have never received any development activities from MCD and some have not received them as per their priorities. Every locality or RWA has their problems and requirements which might be different from others. In this case, the RWA can be a better guide to MCD on where they need the funds and how they want to utilise them."
He continues, "Last year, road carpeting in some areas of our pocket was taken care of. However, our main requirement was the overhauling and repair of the drainage and sewage system which was never done by MCD for the past many years. Also, as of now, we literally have had to beg to MCD councillor for sweeping and cleaning of our pockets but it was never taken care of. Now, if RWA is given the power and the funds, then we can plan for the solutions of our local issues related to MCD in a better way.”
MK Singh, General Secretary of Federation of RWAs Sector 9, Dwarka says that empowering RWA has been a pending demand for a long time. He says that the RWAs are powerless bodies and hence empowering them would bring a paradigm shift in the welfare of residents. He says, “I believe that this thing must be accepted and implemented by any party who comes to power. Such a concept is wonderful irrespective of whose idea was it and who introduced it formally. I feel this must be done after the election by any party.”
While a few RWA members have praised the announcement completely, some have their reservations. Arvind Rudra, President of RWA, Harmony Apartments Sector 4, Dwarka says that empowerment for RWAs is a welcome initiative but our present society is not ready for such a move. He says, “The announcement to empower RWAs is a welcome move. But, considering the present condition of our education and maturity level the question needed to be asked is 'Are we prepared for this?' The answer in my opinion is 'no'. The present structure itself is sufficient, but there is a need to first make it effective and then think about further delegation. Any delegation requires the leaders to be mature and honest. The first step is to make corporators mature and then they can make good mini-corporators. Till then, this decision is a publicity tool.”
President of URJA Atul Goel says that there is a need for equality among RWAs as far as power is concerned. According to him, the government must be serious about this and any such announcement must be implemented effectively and in a true sense. On the other hand, Goel is also afraid of the irregularities which might arrive with the implementation of such concepts in future.