Pune: PCMC gears up to hold first offline general body meet this month

Last week, the state government allowed civic bodies in Maharashtra to hold general body meetings with a 50 per cent cap on attendance.

The Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation is set to hold its first offline civic general body meeting in 15 months after the state government allowed civic bodies to hold meetings with a 50 per cent cap on attendance.

“The state government has allowed PCMC and other civic bodies in the state to hold general body meetings in the physical presence of the corporators. The government has allowed 50 per cent presence of the corporators,” said PCMC Additional Municipal Commissioner Ulhas Jagtap, who is also the municipal secretary.

Jagtap said the decision to hold the physical meetings has been taken in the light of the new directives and following sustained demands from the office-bearers. He said that PCMC Standing Committee Chairman Nitin Landge had given a letter to the commissioner, demanding that all civic meetings be held offline as corporators have received both the vaccine doses.

Additional Municipal Commissioner Vikas Dakhane said that the administration may discuss with the house leaders and mayors to determine if the corporators who are attending the meeting should compulsorily undergo RT-PCR testing.

Jagtap said the general body meeting hall located at PCMC headquarters has a seating capacity of 164 corporators. “We have 130 corporators including five co-opted corporators. Three corporators have died in the last one year. But we have a seating capacity of 164. Therefore, at least 82 corporators will be allowed in the meeting hall,” he said. The meeting is scheduled to be held on June 18. Generally, the meeting is held every month, primarily on the 20th day of the month. However, since June 20 is Sunday, the meeting has been moved to June 18, officials said.

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Jagtap said masks will be mandatory for all the attendees and their hands will be santised before entering the meeting hall. “The corporators will be seated at a distance of six feet from each other,” he said.

Jagtap said this will be the first such meeting with all corporators physically present after the state government banned the meetings last year during the lockdown phase. He said the House leaders of each party will decide on who will attend the meeting this month and subsequent months, till the latest government order regarding 50 per cent attendance remains in force. “The mayor will be writing to the House leaders of each party to decide who will attend this month’s meeting,” he said.

Shiv Sena Corporator Rahul Kalate, however, said though the government had banned offline meetings, Mayor Usha Dhore used to remain present in the GB hall when the meeting was in progress. “Officials used to remain online only. But at least 30-40 corporators used to remain present in the hall and watch the proceedings online,” he said.

NCP Corporator Shyam Lande said,”During the GB proceedings online, too many glitches cropped up. It was difficult to catch what was going on. We could not make out which bill was placed and what resolutions were approved. We could not make out who was speaking as the audio was of poor quality.”

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