The Corporation of the City of Panaji (CCP) has initiated the process to constitute the seven Ward Committees as mandated by Section 41 of the CCP Act. The last date for submitting applications is 16th April by eligible citizens seeking nomination on these Ward committees.
As the CCP Ward committees were not constituted since the enactment of the Act in 2002, Adv. Aires Rodrigues had last year moved the High Court seeking directions that these committees as mandated by the CCP Act be constituted.
Adv. Rodrigues in his petition had pointed out that the Ward Committees will rightly influence the city’s much needed planning in a manner which best addresses its needs while participating in determining core CCP processes such as Integrated Development Planning, CCP budgeting and its performance management besides making sure funds are used for the purposes they are intended for while ensuring that the people of Panaji get the best services on all fronts.
After assuring the High Court, the CCP by an order dated 19th June last year constituted the seven ward committees but contrary to law with relatives and friends of the Corporators as members including then Mayor Uday Madkaikar’s brother also finding a place on one of the committees.
As these Ward committees were not set up in accordance with law, Adv. Rodrigues moved the High Court again after which the CCP by an order on 28th August cancelled those illegal appointments.
The High Court by an order on 31st August directed the CCP to constitute the Ward Committees strictly in accordance with law. So accordingly, the CCP Ward CommitteeRules were framed and notified on 27th November last year. These rules lay down the norms of persons who qualify to be on these committees which includes architects, engineers, Town planners or persons working in the fields of Environment protection, Conservation and Maintenance of Heritage, Urban Development and other specified fields.
The CCP will have seven ward committees each comprising of contiguous wards and besides the three expert nominated members it would also have on board the Corporators representing the wards within the territorial limit of that Ward committee along with an official of the CCP.