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Call to curb tent mafia

By Our Staff Reporter

NEW DELHI, AUG. 25. Expressing concerns over the existence of a tent mafia in booking of parks and community centres for marriages and other social functions, the Councillors of the Standing Committee of the Municipal Corporation of Delhi today demanded initiation of steps to ensure that the facilities provided by the MCD reached the masses and the needy.

Cutting across party lines, the Councillors alleged that there were loopholes in the present computerisation system under which parks and community centres of the MCD were booked on Internet and being made available to the people on first-come-first-served basis.

The issue was raised by the Congress Councillor from Malviya Nagar, Jitender Kumar Kochar, and was supported by his party colleagues, Ajit Singh, Satbir Sharma and Hemchand Goel. At the end of the discussion, the Standing Committee Chairman, Mukesh Goel, directed the Municipal Commissioner, Rakesh Mehta, to bring a new policy plugging all existing loopholes in the system.

"We had computerised the system to bring in transparency and get rid of the strong nexus between the tent mafia and booking officials in the MCD. As of now, our purpose is not being served. Parks are booked well in advance and are not available for the people who genuinely deserve it," Mr. Goel said. His party colleague, Zamir Ahmed, at one point of time even favoured scrapping of the entire system and going back to the manual era.

Raising the issue as soon as the meeting began, Mr. Kochar alleged that the computerised booking of parks and community centres was a big scandal and has only facilitated a tent mafia getting hold of the entire system.

Mr. Ajit Singh alleged that movement of things at the Citizens Services Bureau was very slow and its officials did not implement decisions taken. "As of now, death and birth certificates cannot be issued from any of the Citizen Services Bureau as was promised. One has to go to his original Zone to get the birth and death certificate issued," he said adding "crores of rupees are being spent on the system." Mr. Sharma said the new system was causing inconvenience to the common man.

Assuring that he would look into the issue, Mr. Mehta said computerisation was helping the people book parks and community centres for marriages and other social functions. "This is being done on a first-come-first-serve basis. The software is such that one cannot book parks and community centres before the due date," he said.

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