Harsha Raj Gatti, Editor, Solmelu
Mangaluru City Corporation (MCC) last week has started inviting applications from the general public, who aspire to be part of the Ward Committee. Any local voters across 60 wards under Mangaluru City Corporation (MCC) are eligible to send their application expressing their desire to be a part of MCC’s ward committee.
But wait! What exactly a ward committee is? Why is it important? Why should a resident of Mangaluru know about ward committees? Let’s see. Ward committee is not a grievance cell. It is a committee of the citizen who is voters of the respective ward instituted as a channel of communication and interaction between local residents and the Mangaluru City Corporation.
Backed by the Nagarapalika Act, or 74th constitutional amendment of 1992, this Ward committee allows ward residents or citizens to involve in the decision-making process of the ward. Using data, maps, and information of the ward, the ward committee members may look into the public development programmes being carried out, suggest rectification, ward budget allocation, and highlight the needs of the budget for future public works in the ward. Ward members can also make resolutions on the road, infrastructure, and waste management’s issues in the area and forward it to the relevant authorities in Mangaluru City Corporation.
Every month Ward Committee meetings are held chaired by the elected Ward Corporator, a secretary & the members of the respective ward. The MCC will nominate 10 members, including one representative from the Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe, three women, two representatives from civic groups, and three from the general category for the ward committees. In the cities like Bengaluru city, where Ward committees are in function since 1999, the Ward Committees may even provide a Ward Development scheme for the BBMP to consider in its annual proposal. The minutes of ward committee meeting serves as a public record that makes ward committees accountable and can be followed-up by the relevant authorities in the Mangaluru City Corporation to take suitable action for the development of the ward. Decentralization of power, encouraging civic participation, bridging the gap between people aspiration and the local government seems to be the key goals of establishing Ward Committees
Dear people of Mangaluru, if you think you contribute you have the expertise, knowledge, technical know-how for the overall welfare of our local Mangaluru wards – then maybe your chance. How do you apply? Any local voter from any of the 60 MCC wards, who have no pending criminal cases or political party affiliation can now apply to be a member of the ward committee. All they have to do is download the application form from http://www.mangalurucity.mrc.gov.in/ , fill the form and furnish the required details to Zonal Commissioner; Surathkal, Central or Kadri. You can even email you an application to firstname.lastname@example.org