|2006-07-31||The UMCs revenue from six markets|
Markets are supposed to bring in revenue to the corporations. But, in the case of the Ulhasnagar Municipal Corporation (UMC), for the past few years, the markets that the corporations own have brought in zero revenue. The UMC has six markets across five camps in Ulhasnagar. Out of these, two are completely destroyed with doors and rooftops missing. The four markets that are operational do not bring any revenue to the corporation.
According to the information received by the DK+, a lot of people are earning several lakhs of rupees without actually paying anything to the corporation. For the past 20 years, people have been carrying on with their flourishing businesses in these markets. When asked about why they don’t pay rent to the UMC, one shopkeeper at the Indira Gandhi Market says, “We used to pay legal rents till about 2002-03. But the market’s condition has deteriorated since the last few years. Only if the corporation fulfills our demands for maintaining this market, we will start paying our rents again.”
Under BPMC Act, section 81 (B), notices should be sent to those who do not pay rent and at the non-compliance of which should lead to evacuation from the premises. But no implementation of this act has yet been made.
In camp 5 vegetable market there are around 100 vegetable vendors. According to sources, instead of paying rent to the corporation, the vendors here have been paying money to the antisocial elements as protection money.
|2006-07-30||Deputy speaker allots fund for UMC hearse|
In the issued dated July 8, 2006, the DK+ had carried an article titled ‘Death of the Hearse’, which talked about how the Ulhasnagar Municipal Corporation (UMC) have failed to maintain its hearse. Following the report, Ramnath Mote, Member of Legislative Council (MLC ) representing the teachers’ constituency from Konkan region, who is also a resident of Ulhasnagar, put forth the question in the legislative council. Mote argued that the matter is a serious one as the corporation, which boasts of a Rs 123 crore budget, has been unable to provide an essential service like the hearse for the past five years.
According to Mote, Vasant Davkhare, deputy speaker of the vidhan parishad agreed with him and even allotted some money from his MLC fund for the reinstallation of hearse in Ulhasnagar. However, the finance minister, Jayant Patil, argued that a corporation, which boasts of a Rs 123 crore budget, should be able to provide the service by itself. Still Davkhare felt that “people should not suffer” and went ahead with his allotment.
|2006-07-30||Principals’ Blueprint for Admissions|
Principals of the suburban colleges recently had a meeting to discuss ways of counter violent elements that trouble them during admission process, reports Dr Sunil Sharma.
Last week’s rowdy incident at RKT College, Ulhasnagar, has solidified the principals’ solidarity. On July 18, a woman had thrown ink on the face of T R Dharma, principal of RKT College. The wide media coverage of this vandalism galvanized the principals of the area to design a concerted action plan.
On Friday, July 21, a meeting was convened by the University of Mumbai College Principals’ Association (UMCPA) at the RKT College. 15 principals of the aided and unaided colleges attended the emergency meeting, representing a wide geo area right from Dombivli up to Badlapur. The administrators deliberated and decided the future course of action for more than two hours.
When contacted, Dr Naresh Chandra of Birla College, Kalyan, and president of UMCPA, said, “We deplore this incident. Colleges are temples of learning. Their sanctity should be respected. Nobody should take law into his or her hands. This incident amounts to gross violation of the law. These crude acts of intimidation by the misguided elements are highly condemned by the principal fraternity.”
|2006-07-30||UMC, AMC bag prizes for energy saving|
The Maharashtra energy development agency (MEDA) announced its award for excellence in energy conservation and management for the year 2005. Competitions are held for 16 sectors such as automobiles, engineering, MIDC etc. In the municipal sector, the Ulhasnagar Municipal Corporation (UMC) bagged the first position, Nashik Municipal Corporation won the second position and Ambernath Municipal Council (AMC) got the third position.
The AMC, which covers an area of 38 sq km. Its electric department has 23 staff members. The city has 5000 streetlight poles and 30 high masts. In 2003-04, the AMC started installing energy saving device. Out of the110 switching meter machines, 51 have been provided with the device. The outcome resulted in 40 per cent energy saving, along with a saving of Rs 2 lakhs. The monthly bill amounted to Rs 5 lakhs.
On the other hand, the UMC, which encompasses an area of 13 sq km with 110 staff working for the electric department, have configured a solar system of 20 kilo watt capacity. The office runs on solar fans that have been approved by the Mumbai IIT Energy Audit Department. The corporation vehicles running on 74 HP with 8 km mileage per each litre of petrol or diesel now maneuver with 16 HP engines and give 15 km mileage per one litre of petrol or diesel. This has resulted in 600 litres of petrol or diesel being saved. The vehicle for light repair has also been connected with an inverter that runs on battery engine. In the last five years Rs 1.25 crores was saved by the UMC by adopting these measures. In the last year, the when UMC bagged the second position.
|2006-07-29||Music makes Rafi immortal|
We stock a large collection of his songs and are expecting good sales in the coming week...
Chaudhvi ka Chand, Yeh Reshmi Zulfe, Chand Mera Dil, Teri Bindiyan Re…. There wouldn’t be anyone in India who hasn’t heard or hummed a song sung by Mohammad Rafi. The legendary vocalist sang more than 26,000 songs in his long singing career and Monday will be the immortal singer’s 26th death anniversary. Starting his career in the music industry at the age of 20, Rafi sang all types of songs - bhajans, romantic numbers, rock ‘n’ roll, qawalis, slow numbers, ghazals, sad songs and the list goes on.
Today evening, Mohammad Rafi Fan Club in Ulhasnagar will be holding a cultural programme to commemorate the death anniversary of the maestro. Dr P S Ahuja, President of the club said, “On Rafiji’s death anniversary we’re holding a programme which will showcase his life along with all his evergreen hits. This is our way of offering him a tribute. Our club has been meeting twice a week for a couple of hours since seven years now. We come together and listen to Rafi’s songs. If someone comes across any of his rare interviews or songs, we share it with the club members. We have 40 active members meeting regularly. Today, we’re looking forward to a large gathering.
|2006-07-23||Admission fever hits RKT College|
The date July 18, 2006 is recorded as one of the golden days in the history of the Mumbai University. On this day, President APJ Kalam inaugurated the grand convocation hall as part of the university’s sesquicentennial celebrations. But in the history of one of the suburban college affiliated to Mumbai University, the day would always be remembered as a Black Day.
In an embarrassing incident, a woman blackened the face of T R Dharma, principal of the R K Talreja College in Ulhasnagar. A complaint in this regard has been registered with the Central Police Station.
Recounting the incident, the principal said, "Around noon, a man and a woman came along with a group of 10 students to meet me. I admitted them into my cabin and started discussion. Suddenly the woman rose from her seat and in a fit of rage blackened my face. Soon, they all left the place. I didn’t get any time to respond."
Speaking about the cause of such an outbreak, principal adds, "Last week, one of the RPI leaders B B More had come to me for the admission of a student. I told him that I will look into the matter. I doubt that he is behind what happened inside my cabin as the student that he had introduced to me that day was also present with the group."
|2006-07-23||Man with a mission: Ramesh Kukreja|
Fatigued by his mechanical lifestyle and rummaging for serenity and peace, Ramesh Kukreja (58) left the business fraternity and shifted from Ulhasnagar to Jambhil village, Badlapur. Little did he know that his search was about to end. It was in 2003, when an orphanage was going through a bifurcation wherein one of the caretakers shifted 21 orphans to Kukreja’s farmhouse for time being. After some days the caretaker left, Kukreja felt something missing in his life without the orphans. It was this emotion, which led to the foundation of Vrindavan Balak Ashram that is home to 14 girls, 9 boys and 4 women.
Devoid of any kind of financial aid or donations, this orphanage runs from kukreja’s capital, which comprises of a two-wheeler showroom and trade in honey. He fulfills his business commitments and devotes the rest of his time for the orphanage. These kids are given basic education until class ninth. “I am educating a new generation of kids in the natural; environment, away from the metropolitan crowd. All I want is that these kids, when socialize with the world spread my message of Peace, Modesty and Love,” explains Kukreja. The modus operandi enrollment in the orphanage is a half an hour meeting with Kukreja where he scrutinizes whether the person desperately ache for help and care.
|2006-07-21||Dilip Kumar,Pappu Kalani have not paid covercharge|
The state is still to recover Rs18 crore from people who have been provided police protection based on a threat perception. According to a PIL filed by senior lawyer MP Vashi, among others veteran actor Dilip Kumar allegedly owes the government Rs13 lakh while Ulhasnagar politician Pappu Kalani's dues add up to Rs30 lakh.
The state filed an affidavit on Tuesday without naming the people who owe money for being provided police security. "We cannot reveal the names for security reasons," assistant government pleader said.
Justice RM Lodha and Justice NH Patil directed principal secretary, Home, to file an affidavit within four weeks stating the policy for providing security to categorised (X, Y Z, Z+) and non-categorised individuals, the policy for collecting charges for providing security and the grounds for exempting certain individuals from paying the charges. The HC has restrained the state from disposing any application for waiving off security dues owed by individuals.
|2006-07-16||Leak ails UMC headquarters|
Strange scenes can be seen inside the high profile offices situated at the headquarter building of the Ulhasnagar Municipal Corporation (UMC). For example, newspapers are strewn all over the newly decorated office room of Ashok Bageshwar, deputy municipal commissioner, headquarters.
One can see number of plastic buckets here and there in the offices of the mayor and deputy mayor. These offices too were furnished recently. Don’t mistake these as part of the new interior. Leakage from the terrace has been troubling all the offices in the higher floors of this ground plus two storey structure.
|2006-07-16||Corporation takes charge of community halls|
Following the DK+ report, the UMC officials have started taking control of the community halls in the suburb, which were until now misused by the local politicians and corporators
In the issue dated July 8, the DK+ had highlighted how the community halls in Ulhasnagar are being misused. There are over 100 such community halls and most of them are being used as private properties of local corporators.
In some cases the halls were being used as godown, party offices as well as private vehicles parking lot. The community halls were meant to be used for welfare activity of the general public and were constructed using the funds of the Ulhasnagar Municipal Corporation (UMC). Ironically, there are no billboards outside the community halls to announce that these halls are the properties of the UMC.
|2006-07-16||11 Ulhasnagar schools illegal|
The education board of the Ulhasnagar Municipal Corporation (UMC) has declared 11 schools in its jurisdiction as illegal, leaving students and parents in a terrible state. While three of them are fully illegal, eight are partly unauthorized. According to UMC officials these schools have failed to take necessary government recognition. These schools have been functioning for the past two to three years.
The timing of the declaration is what has upset the students and their parents. The schools reopened after summer vacation on June 12 and the UMC issued the declaration on July 10 only. “They should have declared the list well before June 12. I took admission for my daughter to one of these schools by paying a heavy amount of donation. If they had published the list before June 12, I wouldn’t have sent my child to this school. Now what can we do?” asks a parent.
|2006-07-15||Scary public toilets|
For the past six months, Kesarbai Ughade, a 50-year old resident of Buddha Colony in Ulhasnagar ward number 9, has been bed-ridden with a waist fracture. She suffered the fracture not from a road accident or a domestic mishap.
The Ulhasnagar Municipal Corporation (UMC) is responsible for her pathetic condition.
Jitendra Thorat, a 25-year old from Achanak Nagar of ward number 9 in Ulhasnagar, has been home with a fractured hand for the past two months. He’s unable to go to work. He says that the culprit is UMC.
Ward number 9 in the UMC has a population of over 30,000. According to residents, at least one person in every ten households has suffered some kind of injury while using the public toilets in their colony. The entire population of this ward depends on only three public toilets, which are badly maintained.
|2006-07-15||Ulhasnagar SDO bags ISO 9001:2000 certification|
The Ulhasnagar revenue sub divisional office (SDO) has become the first such office in the state to receive ISO 9001: 2000 certification. This revenue division is the first in the state to go in for standardization. In Maharashtra, there are six revenue divisional offices. They are Konkan, Nashik, Pune, Nagpur, Amravati and Aurangabad. Under these, there are 119 SDOs. The Ulhasnagar SDO was the only one to go in for the ISO certification.
Ravi Katakdhond, sub divisional officer, explains, “It is a competitive world and like every other organization, the government offices also have to be professional and measure up to certain standards. Therefore, we felt it was the need of the hour and went in for ISO certification. We achieved this level through phased development.”
According to Katakdhond the goal was to improve citizens’ welfare. “We wanted to provide consistent good service, improve potential and optimize resource utilization. While planning is an essential part of the process, implementation is equally important. We wanted to set a benchmark for quality services to citizens. The people are our consumers and we want them to be satisfied. In this regard, we have been asking every person dealing with our SDO to fill in a customer satisfaction form and we look into the feedback seriously to assess our performance,” he says.
|2006-07-15||Ram Jethmalani talk on 'Sanskar'|
This Sunday watch Mr. Ram Jethmalani, former Law Minister- Union of India speaking on "Spirituality and Management" at 01:40 pm on Sanskar TV. A versatile Lawyer still full of enthusiasm shares with the youth of India experiences of his life and what he thinks should be the purpose of life for the youth.
He shares his life in India beginning at Ulhasnagar, after partition ,with only Rs. 10 in his pocket. He interprets the Bhagavad Gita as only how Ram Jethmalani could do it. He has his opinions on leadership, not sparing even Mahatma Gandhi and Pt. Nehru. He advises the youth on Management and that creation of wealth is no crime. The youth should learn that there are no failures and every adversity is an opportunity to move up in life. In the end he advises the youth that to rise in life you have to earn the trust of the people and that can be earned only by honesty and integrity.
Watch all this and more on Sanskar TV on Sunday July 16 at 1.40 PM.
|2006-07-09||Big rush for local junior colleges|
Dinesh Panjwani, principal of the much sought-after CHM College, Ulhasnagar, has a similar story to tell. “Consistent good results, large number of courses available, greater number of cultural and sports activities, better infrastructure and a sprawling campus make CHM a hot choice in Thane and beyond. Students from Mulund and even Karjat seek admission here. This scramble leads to a rise in cut-off points as seats are limited,” he says.
Science - 86%, Commerce - 76%, Arts - 54%
|2006-07-09||UMC violating law made after demolitions|
After the recent spate of demolitions of unauthorized constructions in Ulhasnagar and the subsequent uproar, the state government came up with a new ordinance in the form of the Unauthorized Development Regulation Act, 2006. According to its regulations, all constructions built on or before January 1, 2005 would come under the purview of the new law.
Sec 3 (3) of the ordinance states that it is illegal to build on or near water courses and water bodies such as tank beds, river beds, natural drainage and such other places. However, ironically, while unauthorized constructions still abound and the Ulhasnagar Municipal Corporation (UMC) is also party to it.
The UMC commissioner claims to have delegated all his powers related to the new regulation to the ward officers. Despite this, there is a plethora of illegal construction works happening, especially in wards 3 and 4. Further, in ward number 15, close to the platform number 2 of the railway station, the UMC itself is flouting the law.
The DK+ team found that there is a construction work happening adjacent to a big sewer. It is a clear violation of section 3 (3) of the Act. Investigations at the UMC revealed that the corporation itself has undertaken the work. Reportedly, the corporation is building a public toilet to be handed over to the Pratik Samajik Pratishthan on a Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) basis for 20 years. The toilet will be a pay-and-use facility.
The heavy rains during the past week played havoc in Mumbai and its suburbs. However, the level of destruction was nowhere close to 26/7.There was several feet high water flowing over the short bridge near the Ulhasnagar Railway Station in West. A 20-year old youth identified as Laloo Shaikh drowned in the flood water as he was trying to cross the bridge. The municipal corporation has placed a small-sized warning board. However, commuters are paying little heed to the warning.
|2006-07-08||Caught in the Pit|
A fully loaded tanker containing chemicals was stuck in the middle of the road at Lal Bhadur Shashtri Chowk on Kalyan - Badlapur road near the section 17 in Ulhasnagar camp number 3 on July 2. It is surprising to note that the concrete roads have developed pits. The tanker got stuck at around 10 in the morning and the authorities were able to clear the road only by five in evening. Till then, motorists on the road had a tough time
|2006-07-08||UMC community halls misused|
Municipal councilors are using most of these community halls as their private properties, godowns and party offices, reports Rajesh Jagtap
The Ulhasnagar Municipal Corporation (UMC) has more than 100 community halls in the town. Community halls are usually meant to conduct social events and other such functions of various communities. But, a closer inspection by the DK+ revealed that in reality, these halls are being misused to a great extent. At many places, corporators of the area use the halls as their private property.
At Sambhaji Chowk in Ulhasnagar 4, corporator Ramesh Chauhan has made this spot his personal parking space with four wheelers and other vehicles parked inside the hall. Similarly, the community hall at Kurla Camp in Ulhasnagar 4 is used as a private property by the local Shiv Sena Shakha. The hall was constructed for a gymnasium through Prakash Paranjpe’s MP fund. Some time ago, a local Hindi school used to run in its premises. Meanwhile, the community hall at the Shivai Nagar Shakha is used to store potatoes and onions.
|2006-07-08||Death of the Hearse|
Under the Disaster Management Programme, the Ulhasnagar Municipal Corporation (UMC) has brought out an emergency contact directory containing the numbers of important services of the corporation and other government agencies. Next to hearse is the number 2720131. But when the DK+ cross checked about the availability of the vehicle, an official at the fire department informed us that the vehicle has not been on service for the last five years.
The hearse falls under the Fire Department and is a vehicle which is used to carry dead bodies. Unlike ambulances, a hearse can be kept only by the local government agencies. NGOs and private bodies are not permitted to possess the vehicle. The fire official added further that the department only has three-wheeler tempos to carry unclaimed dead bodies. Since it is illegal for ambulances to carry dead bodies to houses, they charge about two to three times more than the actual amount.
Shortage of money cannot be a reason for non-existence of hearse. According to the Vehicles Department, the UMC has around 27 vehicles and time and again, they also hire 29 vehicles for various departmental purposes. During this very financial year, a new Honda City worth Rs 8.5 lakh was purchased for the UMC Commissioner.
|2006-07-02||Development works in UMC questioned|
All the development works sanctioned by the UMC between March 06 and May 06 have been put under scanner by the governing bodies. According to sources 139 projects worth Rs 3 crores has been put under the scanner.
Allegedly, local corporators and concerned officials exaggerated the bill amounts of these projects.
Recently, these issues had come before the UMC standing committee. As per the BPMC Act of 1949 u/s 73 (D), the standing committee should be informed about the decisions taken by the officials.
The section says that the municipal commissioner is entitled to sanction development works costing up to Rs 3 lakhs and the work allotted to the contractors should be intimated to the standing committee.
But these 139 development works were brought to the standing committee’s notice after a delay of three months. Standing committee chairman and Mayor Jyoti Kalani along with newly appointed commissioner Sadashiv Kamble then decided to scrutinize the ongoing projects.
|2006-07-01||Proofs of a scam|
In May 2003, the Ulhasnagar Municipal Corporation (UMC) published advertisements for filling up the 149 vacant posts in the Class III and Class IV (clerical and the like) categories. All the vacancies were in the reserved category and there was a government instruction to finish the recruitment process within a month’s time.
Several applications came for the posts. The UMC is however not disclosing how many applications it received. The recruitment process included short listing by a scrutiny committee and interviews by a selection committee consisting of higher officials.