Published On : Thu, May 2nd, 2013

Are the wars over LBT, Nag Nadi issues making the Nagpur citizens the victims?

Nagpur Today:

Is it necessary to tell tale of history of wars, battles and other conflicts?  The history shows that any war or battle fought from the era of Mughal wars like the famous Panipat  battle between the Mughal Babur and the Delhi Sultan Ibrahim Lodi, between Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj and different Mughal emperors, Independence struggle by Indian people against 150-year British rule , Indo-Pak wars, Indo-China war and other similar umpteen battles as far as India is concerned for the good cause or the vicious reason and the World War-I and II and other international wars between various nations, the most important fact reveals that innocent people were the victims than the conflicting individuals or nations. Millions and millions of innocent people were victims and died the horrible deaths because of hundreds of wars and battles. And the wars abysmally left no-win-win situations either.

The main aspect of Nagpur Today is not to reiterate the history but to highlight the terrible effects of battle between the traders, businessmen, and industries and the Maharashtra Government over the contentious issue of Local Body Tax (LBT) and the second battle  “Mission Nag Nadi Cleaning” waged  by Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) with much fanfare for “Victory of Good over Evil” (the Nag Nadi).

The citizens of Nagpur city are pondering seriously over both issues and cleverly thinking the pros and cons of the issues that have put them in great difficulty and in dilemma, too. They have been very concerned that instead of any benefit, the issues might hit them hard, if the issues remain a photo session only. Some businessmen with vested interests are instigating and misleading the gullible traders, footpath vendors, industries and others on the LBT issue and the “innocent victims” (or tricky lot) are fighting a losing battle for withdrawal of LBT. In this vicious circle, people with vested interests are taking a advantage of sort of the situation and pocketing the bounty by hooks or crooks. However, the disturbing outcome of this situation, is that the citizens, directly or indirectly, are taking a severe beating.

Secondly, by pushing common citizens ahead, the traders are resorting to forceful bandh for the last 11 days on LBT. The reality is that the citizens or say consumers would be the most beneficial lot and the traders, who till now were cheating and looting the consumers in the name of fictitious taxes, would be forced to stop robbing the citizens by enforcing the LBT. The crafty business community also dented the revenue of Maharashtra Government for years by evading and stealing the taxes with their sly methods. Now, the LBT enforcement will turn the tables of such traders and would become better for the gullible consumers.  Or to continue their nefarious activities, they would have to fill the pockets of top khaki or khadi  bosses to share the “stolen” bounty.

Another contradictory fact reveals that several establishments of Haldiram Group, jewellery showrooms, and other big showrooms of different companies keep their establishments open thus distancing themselves from the bandh called by a few influential business community. In Gandhibagh and Itwari wholesale markets the scenario is totally different to what the agitationists terming  the bandh a total. The traders in these areas, for the show of solidarity, keep the shutters down but carry out business through back doors by selling goods to customers and retail traders. On the other hand, the protesting traders are filling their godowns by bringing the essential and other goods from outside keeping in mind the marriage season.

Another disturbing aspect of the bandh is the traders are forcing the Government to meet their demands by making amendments on LBT and once the demand is fulfilled, another fresh demand is put forth. A few traders and politicians are holding the Government and the citizens to ransom by prolonging the agitation. Political parties like BJP and Congress are taking the advantage by jumping themselves into the “Battle of LBT” to derive some benefit in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls.

Another battle is fought on Nag Nadi cleaning front though the cause is good for  public health. However, the most important fact the NMC must remember is that the sources of sewage lines of residential areas along the Nag Nadi the NMC had allowed to merge in the past are not stopped , the Nag Nadi will never become a clean river and a natural beauty.  There are two counts that are making the Nag Nadi polluted. There are two residential layouts numbering 572 and 1900 along the Nag Nadi under NIT. The residents have been passing their sewage directly to the Nag Nadi. However, the rules say that the residents must have their own sewage plants  in the layouts and the sewage should be passed to these plants And after cleaning the sewage plants the waste water should be passed to the Nag Nadi. The NIT should have taken money from residents of the two layouts for the sewage plants or itself should have constructed the plants from money taken from the residents.

The NMC and the NIT bosses know the rules but their lethargy is beyond understanding. The issue was raised by a senior Corporator and a former NIT Trusty and advised the NMC administration and the Mayor Anil Sole to issue notice NIT for this irregularity. However, when the issue was raised, the NIT Chairman got enraged and asserted that he an engineer and the garbage and sewage disposal is not his responsibility. The Corporators too retorted that they are social engineers. Now, it has become crystal clear that NMC and NIT are main culprits in making Nag Nadi unclean and utterly polluted.

The NMC has adopted double standards by blaming the citizens for polluted Nag Nadi and shirking the responsibility on the issue. Now, the same NMC is seeking cooperation from the “irresponsible” citizens for the “Mission Nag Nadi Cleaning”. On May 1, the day the mission was started went on bragging spree by inviting not only the Guardian Minister Shivajirao Moghe, who too appreciated the NMC efforts, but several BJP leaders and leaders of other parties, top Government bosses to get patted by them for the mission.

The most unfortunate fact is that once they heard the sound of click (Camera) and got published in city’s newspapers, they clicked away and now, the employees are striving hard to clean the Nag Nadi as this is the question of their both ends to meet.

It may be mentioned that both the issues are beneficial for the citizens finance wise and health wise but some people are misleading the citizens for vested interests and robbing the Government of revenue by way of their “dirty plans”.