A move to ensure proper maintenance of gardens, Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) is going to tax citizens for utilising its well-developed gardens. Standing Committee on Tuesday at its meeting approved the proposal mooted by civic administration. Vijay Zalke, Chairperson, Standing Committee said that the aim is to rope in prominent NGOs and ensure proper maintenance of gardens and also provide services to citizens. Given the precarious condition of civic finance such harsh decision is inevitable. And out of 200 plus gardens of NMC, only 89 gardens are listed for handing over to NGOs for their upkeep and maintenance. While till 9 am, entry to civic gardens would remain free, thereafter entry fee of Rs 5 is prescribed.
Giving idea of the scheme he said that garden identified for handing over to NGOs are spread over 2 acres and those having area of around 0.5 to 2 acres. To ensure that NGOs take care of garden in prescribed format, a committee of prominent citizens of the area with Corporator as it head would keep a close watch. The NGOs cannot alter basic structure nor undertake any permanent construction without authorisation from NMC. At the meeting of Standing Committee the civic administration was directed to put up a comparative analysis as to functioning of both models, wherein garden maintained by civic body itself and benefits if same are handed over to NGOs. The proposal has incorporated some provisions to ensure there is no misuse of the lease pointed out Zalke. NMC has proposed to levy fine of Rs. 500 daily in case complaints about violation of lease are received and same are found true. Also every NGO wanting to take a garden would have to deposit bank guarantee of Rs. Five lakhs and guarantee of Rs. 25,000 which can be confiscated by the administration. Similarly, Standing Committee directed administration to provide six monthly review report post handing over of gardens to NGOs.