Guwahati, Tuesday, March 13, 2018
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JMB flayed over failure to open animal shelter
Staff Correspondent
 JORHAT, March 12 - Ward commissioner of ward number 6 of Jorhat Municipal Board (JMB) belonging to the ruling BJP, Ankur Gupta, has again criticized the JMB run by his party for not taking steps to prevent wandering of ownerless cattle on streets of the town that causes traffic hazard.

In a letter to the JMB Chairman Jayanta Borkakati, Gupta reminded him that a local religious organization under the name ‘Geeta Ashram Gowshala’ twice in the past two years had (via letters) expressed its willingness to provide shelter to ownerless cattle roaming on the streets.

Gupta stated that in this regard he (Gupta) along with a representative of the ‘Geeta Ashram Gowshala’ had met Borkakati on October 17 last year and apprised him about the matter regarding the ashram’s willingness to take such cattle to their Ashram, if the JMB picks up the animals from the roads and hands them over.

The ward commissioner said that Borkakati gave a positive response to them and assured to take necessary steps after discussing the matter with other ward members of the Board.

Gupta said, however, till date no steps on the issue has been initiated for which traffic movement on the streets and roads has been severely affected.

He also reminded that the JMB during its Board meeting held on February 26, 2016, had a discussion about havoc created by ownerless cattle, pigs and dogs on the streets.

Gupta said that the meeting had decided to allot Rs 20 lakh to open a pound (shelter home) to keep such wandering animals.

He expressed regret over no measures being taken up by the JMB in this regard so far and urged the chairman to take note of the issue and undertake necessary action.

It may be mentioned here that Gupta last month had written to Borkakati opposing JMB allotting the work of collecting taxes from market areas and parking lots for the new financial year to the same parties, which were awarded the job for the last fiscal year.

Gupta had sought tendering process to be followed in alloting the job of tax collection from market areas and parking lots.

He had stated that by not following the process of tendering while alloting the task (tax collection), JMB will be losing revenue and this policy was severely criticized by BJP when the previous civic body run by Congress party had adopted.

Gupta also had mentioned that the Gauhati HC in an order passed recently while responding to a writ petition filed by one Dipak Das on the issue, has directed the JMB to call bids by issuing tender.

The JMB, having 19 wards, is run by BJP having 12 ward members and rest by the Congress.

JMB has been hit by infighting since middle of last year resulting in replacement of the earlier chairperson Aruna Dutta, (Member of ward number 1) who resigned on August 3, 2017.

Borkakati assumed charge as the JMB Chairman on September 21 last year after party succeeded in getting the nine ward commissioners who opposed Borkakati, to accept him (Borkakati) as the chairman.

Similarly, the post of JMB vice-chairman got vacant in November 24 last year after then vice-chairman Anup Ghosh Dastidar resigned citing personal reasons.

On January 21 this year Paban Bordoloi, Commissioner of Ward number 15 took over as the Vice-Chairman of JMB.

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