Saturday 4 February 2023
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IndiaElectionsMCD explainer: Jobs expected of a councillor

MCD explainer: Jobs expected of a councillor

Bullet points listing the various responsibilities of the councillor of every ward of the MCD, along with brief voter education in legislative bodies

Technically, what people of a city expect their councillor (referred to as a “corporator” in some parts of the country) to do is indeed the job of officers and workers of the municipality (in towns) or municipal corporation (in big cities). However, when the employees of the municipality fail to discharge their duties to the satisfaction of the people, it’s the political executive of the local level whom they urge to get the work done. The Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) is no exception.

In this context, it must be noted that India suffers from poor education, as a result of which, many a time, people expect their MP or MLA to do what is the job of their councillor. A vidhan sabha or legislative assembly as the level and the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha, together referred to as the parliament in India, are policy-making bodies that should ideally not get involved in things like building and repairing roads inside a given city, ensuring proper water and electricity supplies to the city’s residents, etc. The assemblies and the parliament are supposed to concentrate on macro issues like policies and actions on security, education, finance etc for their respective areas of jurisdiction.

Since the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has emerged as the winner with 134 seats in the 2022 MCD election, leaving 104 for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the party that rules the city- will now be primarily responsible for its daily upkeep. And following are the tasks that the ward heads aka councillors will be responsible for:

  • Urban planning including town planning
  • Regulation of land use and construction of buildings
  • Planning for economic & social development
  • Roads and bridges
  • Water supply – domestic
  • Public health
  • Fire services
  • Urban forestry
  • Safeguarding the interests of weaker sections of the society
  • Slum improvement and upgradation
  • Urban poverty alleviation
  • Provision of urban amenities and facilities — parks
  • Promotion of culture
  • Burials and burial grounds
  • Cattle pounds
  • Vital statistics including registration of births and deaths
  • Public amenities including street lighting
  • Regulation of slaughterhouses and tanneries

The MCD has 250 wards, and the simple majority mark is 126. This was the first election after the MCD was reunified earlier this year. The high-stakes election to the 250 wards of the MCD was held on 4 December.

In 2017, the BJP had clinched 181 of the then 270 municipal wards while AAP had won 48 and the Indian National Congress finished third with just 30.

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