Criteria tweaked, four more municipal corporations in TN soon

As per the bill introduced to amend the Tamil Nadu Urban Local Bodies Act, 1998, any local body with a two lakh population and Rs 20 crore income can be declared as a municipal corporation.
Tamil Nadu Municipal Administration Minister KN Nehru
Tamil Nadu Municipal Administration Minister KN Nehru(File photo)

CHENNAI: Municipal Administration Minister KN Nehru on Friday introduced a bill to clear the decks for elevating four municipalities — Karaikudi, Tiruvannamalai, Pudukottai and Namakkal — into municipal corporations by revising the population and income criteria stipulated for declaring a local body into a municipal corporation.

At present, a local body with a population of not less than three lakh and annual income of not less than Rs 30 crore can be declared as a municipal corporation. But as per the bill introduced to amend the Tamil Nadu Urban Local Bodies Act, 1998, any local body with two lakh population and Rs 20-crore income can be declared as a municipal corporation.

Another amendment in the bill said, “The governor may, by notification, having regard to the percentage of employment in non-agricultural activities, the economic, historic or touristic importance or such other factors as he deems fit, declare his intention to constitute any local area as a town panchayat, a municipal council or a municipal corporation, as the case may be.”

On March 15, the government notified its intention to upgrade the above four municipalities into municipal corporations and the objections/views expressed by individuals and public welfare associations on the proposal were considered by the government.

The bill introduced by Nehru on Friday pointed out that after the above notification, it has been brought to the notice of the government that in several district headquarters, historically-important towns, and pilgrimage towns where the population and income are less than the prescribed limit, there has been continuous vertical growth because of robust urbanisation.

‘Legal provisions have to be created for local bodies’

There is a need for better infrastructure facilities including advance waste disposal facilities necessitating the need to declare them as a town panchayat, municipal council or a municipal corporation.

“But since the population and income criteria remain a hindrance, suitable legal provisions have to be created for elevating the status of these local bodies irrespective of their population and income,” the bill said.

Nehru also introduced another bill to further amend the Tamil Nadu Urban Local Bodies Act, 1998, to add certain new provisions to implement this Act effectively. Finance Minister Thangam Thennarasu introduced a bill to amend the Tamil Nadu Transparency in Tenders Act.

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