- With growing a population in suburbs and difficulty in managing civic services and planning for development works, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has decided to bifurcate some of its larger administrative wards while restructuring the smaller ones.
- Lets try to understand the need and challenges in restructuring BMC.
- The BMC, which was formed as a ‘town council’ in 1873. In around 150 years the BMC has grown administratively with the city’s expansion to the north.
- After 1947, the corporation was formed in 1950 with suburbs from Bandra to Andheri and Sion to Ghatkopar.
- In 1956, the remaining portion of Andheri to Dahisar and Ghatkopar to Mulund were merged in the municipal corporation.
- Again in 1964, to provide better facilities to the growing population, six divisional wards were further divided into 21 administrative wards.
- In 2000, some wards were bifurcated taking the total wards up to 24. Today, 5 IAS officers handle the entire corporation.
- Ward A: Churchgate, Colaba, and Navy Nagar
- Ward B: Masjid Bunder, Mohd. Ali Road, Dongri and Bhendi Bazar
- Ward C: Pydhonie and Bhuleshwar
- Ward D: Grant Road, Walkeshwar, Malabar Hill, Breach Candy to Haji Ali
- Ward E: Byculla, Madanpura, Agripada, Nagpada, Dockyard Road, Reay Road, Chichpokli
- Ward F North: Matunga, Sion, Wadala, Hindu Colony
- Ward F South: Parel
- Ward G North: Dharavi, Mahim and Dadar
- Ward G South: Worli and Prabhadevi
- Ward H East: Bandra East, Khar East and Santacruz East
- Ward H West: Bandra West, Khar West, Santacruz West
- Ward K/East: Andheri East, Jogeshwari East, and Vile Parle East
- Ward K/West: Andheri West, Jogeshwari West, and Vile Parle West
- Ward L: Sakinaka, Chandivali, Asalpha, and Kurla
- Ward M/East: Mankhurd, Anushakti Nagar, Deonar, Cheetah Camp, Shivaji Nagar
- Ward M/ West: Chembur, Sindhi Society, Chheda Nagar and Tilak Nagar
- Ward N: Ghatkopar, Vidyavihar and Pant Nagar
- Ward P/North: Malad, Manori, Marve, Aksa, and Madh
- Ward P/South: Goregaon
- Ward R Central: Borivali
- Ward R/North: Dahisar
- Ward R/South: Kandivali and Charkop
- Ward S: Bhandup, Powai, Kanjurmarh, Vikhroli and Nahur
- Ward T: Mulund
Lets put it into perspective…
- As per 2011 census, Mumbai had population of 1.24 cr (Today – 2.1 cr appx).
- Mumbai is bigger than Sweden (1 cr) and Denmark (58.1 lakh). Mumbai is bigger than at least 10 Indian states including Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh in terms of population.
- P-north (Malad) is among the biggest administrative wards with 9.74 lakh people. Followed by 9.33 lakh in L ward (Kurla), 8.52 lakh in K-east (Andheri east), 7.74 lakh in K-west ward (Andheri west).
- (Again all this as per 2011 estimates – Imagine what’s the situation today…!!!) Some wards are even bigger than cities like Chandigarh (9.67 lakh) and Bhubaneswar (8.43 lakh).
Why the restructuring?
- Owing to the challenges in service delivery, the BMC has proposed to divide a few larger wards and merge a few smaller wards in the island city.
- In the latest proposal, bifurcation of K-east ward (Andheri east) and L ward (Kurla) each into two has come for approval before BMC’s leaders.
- Even before, the corporation had proposed to divide P-north (Malad) ward into two, merger of ward B (Dongari), C ward (Bhuleshwar, Kalbadevi) into E ward (Byculla) and D ward (Malabar Hill) respectively. (Not approved..)
Does Restructuring wards make sense?
- An administrative ward is crucial in preparing a development plan of the area. Considering the vast geographical areas and population density, the splitting of wards and restructuring will help in better planning and improvement in basic citizen facilities.
- Basic citizen facilities like citizen’s birth and death certificates, property tax payment, water and sewage issues, garbage collection, footpaths and road repairs, complaints against encroachment and illegal construction, maintaining open spaces, and providing health services can be improved.
- In larger wards, officials have often complained about over burden of work that affects quality of services.
- Nothing new, we all know it…
- Problems with respect to “FFF”
- Restructuring will another problem – Political opposition
- Without proper planning, implementation & monitoring it will not lead to decentralization but decentralization of corruption..!!
- Problems with respect to “FFF”