On Saturday, the Delhi government allocated Rs 1,051 crore to three municipal corporations “to pay their employees’ wages.” However, the civil authorities stated that they owe it.
According to the government statement, Rs 366.9 crore was transferred to the East MCD, Rs 432.8 crores to the northern MCD and 251.6 crores to the southern MCD.
Speaking Saturday at a digital press conference, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said: “We have learned that Delhi Municipal Corporation, due to its incompetence and corruption, did not distribute salaries to its employees during pandemic… This reflects very badly on MCDs if they cannot even pay the salaries of medical staff, doctors and nurses who risk their lives to save people in these unprecedented times. To deal with and out of this pandemic, the Delhi government has allocated Rs 1,051 crore in aid to MCD so that MCD can effectively pay salaries to employees who have not been able to receive it so far. It is our hope that MCD management ensures that this assistance will not be used for any other activities, will not be distracted in any way, but will only be used to pay the salaries of MCD employees involved in COVID-19 debt. We need to make sure our frontline MCD employees are paid their due wages on time, by any means. “
Sisodia added: “The Chief Minister Arvind Kejrival ensures that despite the resource constraints that Delhi is facing due to Covid, the Delhi government will assist and support all dedicated employees carrying out Covid duties so that they can receive their salaries in an orderly manner.
Northern MCD Mayor Jai Prakash responded that Sisodia should clarify whether the grant was a first quarter corporate contribution fund or a special fund for employee salaries. “If this is the grant amount for the first quarter, then why was it awarded after a two month delay and not in April?” Prakash said, adding that he wrote several letters to the chief minister to report the amount for the first quarter.
Last week, the Delhi government launched an investigation into “under-treatment” of patients at Hindu Rao Hospital, run by the Northern MCD, where 23 coronavirus patients have left the facility since April 18 without informing the hospital. Prakash lashed out at the Delhi government for failing to fight the disease.
Over the past year, employees of the Northern MCD have protested against non-payment of wages. In March, doctors at Northern MCD postponed mass leave indefinitely due to unpaid wages to meet the sudden surge in Covid cases.