Mandi: Himachal Pradesh’s Urban Development Department’s move to increase geographic areas of municipal councils falling under Mandi, Kangra, Solan and Sirmaur districts has come under scrutiny for violations of Union home ministry’s directives.
The Union home department through a circular issued to all state chief secretaries on September 22, 2009 had directed them not to carry out any kind of change in the administrative units under them from January1, 2010 till March 31, 2011 due to the ongoing census. The directive issued by the registrar general clearly mentions that during this period no changes could be made to municipal corporations, councils, tehsils, etc, However, not caring for the orders, the Urban Development Department on August 18, 2010 directed the deputy commissioners of the said districts to start work on incorporating villages adjoining the towns under their municipal limits.
The directive also mentioned that people may submit their objections to the department through the respective DCs within a period of six months. Principal Secretary, Urban Development Department admitted that they have received the objections and the same would be presented before the cabinet meeting to be held on October 18.
Mandi RTI Bureau member Ashish Sharma has also approached the state high court and also the Governor in this regard, seeking action against the officials responsible for the move.