The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) is likely to submit a draft report on the improvement of electoral ward boundaries before the State Election Commission (SEC) by next week. Officials of the BMC’s election department said that the process of delimitation or reform of ward boundaries is almost over and not much change is expected.
On August 25, the SEC issued directions to 18 municipal corporations, including Mumbai, to begin the process of delimiting ward boundaries. The state election body had asked the corporations to send draft reports at the earliest.
As part of preparation corporations are improving ward boundaries based on population, updating voter lists ward wise, inclusion or exclusion of areas in wards based on changes in geography due to redevelopment, new road construction, bridges and developing infrastructure like slum rehabilitation. projects.
The census was due to take place this year, however, due to COVID-19, not counted.
Officials said that during the delimitation process, it is ensured that the names of people living in the same area are at the nearest polling stations. “In an electoral ward if the population gap is more than 10% or less than 10% then we will go for delimitation. Hence, we have asked our staff to collect all the data on the addition or removal of voters in the wards, on the basis of which the limits will be fixed,” said additional municipal commissioner Suresh Kakani.
“The draft report is almost complete and it is likely to be submitted by next week,” he said. After the report is presented to the SEC, further process of publishing new ward boundaries and inviting suggestions and objections will be invited.
There are 227 electoral wards in Mumbai. As per norms, the proportion of population in each electoral ward should be around 54,000. However, if the difference is more than 10% and less than 10% there will be delimitation.
Earlier in 2017 the Congress had accused of rigging the boundaries of the then ward. BJP Government. Congress leader Ravi Raja had written to the Election Commission alleging that the BJP changed the ward boundaries in at least 45 wards which benefitted it. Shiv Sena He was also accused of manipulation of electoral wards in 30 wards.
Asked whether the civic body is also planning to change the ward boundaries of these wards, an official of the BMC’s election department said, “Not much change is expected.”