By Milind Deora:
Mumbai deserves better. The recent, unfortunate rape incident is a reflection of a deeper malaise. Like you, I am overwhelmed with grief and anger. Like you, I’m pained to see this city decay. Like you, I want better governance.
All the MPs, MLAs & Municipal Councillors elected from Mumbai are capable people but are hostage to an inefficient governance model. There’s no one person in charge of Mumbai.
Mumbai is not merely the capital of Maharashtra; it has unbreakable social and cultural bonds with it. There is no question of separating Mumbai form Maharashtra; it is an integral part of it. Mumbai is too large and complex a city whose administration cannot be dependent on the Maharashtra State Government and its Ministers who are not elected directly from Mumbai. Mumbai needs to be run by Mumbaikars who understand the intricacies of governing this large a metropolis. Devolution of power is therefore the answer. A directly elected Mayor will be accountable to Mumbai’s voters, with the power to coordinate governance across departments and agencies within the State government. This is a globally proven urban governance model and also a politically pragmatic solution in the interest of every Mumbaikar. The sensational rhetoric of separating Mumbai from Maharashtra is silly, impractical and frivolous, an idea espoused largely by Page 3 commentators.
Join me in a campaign to empower Mumbai’s Mayor with accountability to Mumbai’s voters. Let there be greater transparency and coordination in the way Mumbai is governed.
As someone who’s been elected by Mumbai for almost a decade and anguished through all the tribulations of the city, I believe this is the only solution. The time is opportune to give this idea more momentum as we approach elections. I urge you to write to all of your elected representative across all political parties to make this idea an election issue and thus hopefully a reality soon.
Looking forward to your signature,
Minister of State for Communications & IT and Shipping
Click here to sign the petition.