Published On : Wed, Sep 12th, 2018

Debt-ridden NMC looking for more loans

Nagpur: Burdened with a debt of Rs 800 Crore under the rule of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) is showing no sign of recovery in its financial condition and the Corporation is likely to borrow more money to complete its ongoing development works.

The NMC already had a debt of Rs 600 Crore and another Rs 200 Crore were borrowed last month. The annual administrative expenses of the NMC are Rs 950 Crore, which is 55% of its total annual revenues. Moreover, the revenue sources of NMC are limited and the Corporation fails to generate desired revenues due to no control on its property tax, market tax, water tax, town planning and fire brigade departments. In such situations, the NMC is finding it difficult to raise money for the development projects announced in its 2018-19 budget.

Apart from this, the NMC has to contribute its share to the Central government’s project like Smart City and Metro Rail. The ruling party leaders in NMC and its administration are staring at the State government to bail it out from this financial crisis. The monthly expenses of NMC include six to seven crore rupees as compensation to city bus service operators, payments to Orange City Waters (OCW), Kanak Resources Management, Cyber Tech, a private PR agency, staff salaries and pensions, and installments of bank loans.

Looking at this crisis, NMC Commissioner Virendra Singh had tried to cut expenses of the Corporation, but the ruling party managed to silence the administration by using the Opposition for its own interest. The administration then hurriedly invited tenders for some of the works to avoid any dispute with ruling party.

On the other hand, the Deputy Mayor has withheld distribution of Rs 2 crore funds from his quota. While Rs 5 crore of Mayor quota are reportedly being distributed to near and dear ones only. Meanwhile, Mayor Nanda Jichkar has gone on a free foreign tour despite the fact that the city is struggling with increasing menace of dengue and other diseases.