Monday, August 20, 2012

Municipal Corporation Departments and Management

Various departments of a Municipal Corporation (or Nagar Palika) are supposed to monitor and supervise the activities within their allocated district. Whether it is construction work, or a matter of water supply, or even solid waste management, authorized officials are responsible for timely completion of public works. Development and upgradation of facilities in a state or district, is the primary responsibility of Nagarpalika departments.

1. Engineering Department: The engineering department of a Municipal Corporation is authorized to manage numerous areas, such as road management, buildings/ estate management, national highways management, subway management and major construction projects. This department scrutinizes the construction of roads and national highways. While constructing national highways, the municipal corporations of one state work together with the nagar palikas of other states. Another area of concern is the management of government buildings, parking lots and subways; which includes their construction and renovation, as well. Approving sanction for the construction of buildings is also undertaken by the engineering department of a Nagarpalika.

2. Horticulture Department: The horticulture department of a Municipal Corporation works to manage parks and gardens, which helps control the pollution levels in a city. Under the Green Revolution, this nagar palika department supervises tree plantation and the construction of parks, for a cleaner and healthier environment. For example, the Chennai Municipal Corporation maintains 230 parks. The Delhi Municipal Corporation has constructed new parks, such as the Connaught Place Central Park, and also maintains a large number of other parks in the city.

3. Water Supply and Drainage Management: Ensuring sufficient water supply to the citizens of a concerned district is another concern of a Municipal Corporation. To administer this task, the water supply and drainage management department of Nagarpalikas have drawn up numerous schemes. This department is authorized to supervise appropriate supply of water to residential and commercial complexes. Municipal corporations are also responsible for drawing up new methods of making proper use of rain water, and managing drainage. For this purpose, several nagar palikas have adopted the 'Boring Method and Percolation Well' method. The Water Supply and Drainage Management Department of municipal corporations are also responnsible for doing pre-chlorination of water, to ensure the availability of safe drinking water for all.

4. Public Health Management: The public health management department of a municipal corporation is responsible for developing hospitals and health centres, to provide appropriate health facilities to the citizens. In addition to this, the health department of various nagar palikas also has to help prevent food adulteration. This department has to also step in to manage the spread of epidemic diseases, and provide best possible medical care when there are indications of a water-borne or any other communicative disease spreading.

Municipal Corporations also manage specialized hospitals, such as tuberculosis or maternity centres, in some states. Corporation hospitals, under the supervision of the public health department, also organize health campaigns and mobile medical units for providing preventive aid to those patients who are unable to visit hospitals.

5. Revenue Department: The revenue department steps in to levy and collect taxes in a standardized manner. Under the Municipal Corporation Act, the nagarpalikas of a city are supposed to ensure legalized collection of property tax, Octroi and income tax. Corporations and the Central Government provide a number of civic amenities to the citizens, and taxes collected by the nagar palika are used to pay for these facilities through the Municipal Corporation Fund. This fund is also used to upgrade existing facilities.

6. Electrical Department: The electrical department of a Municipal Corporation is responsible for supply of electricity. To provide load-shedding free service, electrical departments install electrical polls on streets, parks or necessary places. This department is also responsible for developing and incorporating new  technology, to enhance power supply and reduce failure rates.

This department also provides electricity connections for running electric crematoriums, and high-tension power to run businesses and industrial units. The rates charged by a Municipal Corporation for the connection, depends on the usage and purpose.

7. Solid Waste Management: This department handles the task of maintaining hygiene in the areas falling within its jurisdiction. The Solid Waste Management Department also steps in after demolition or construction work, to clean up the waste and scrap. A Superintendent Engineer, who provides vehicles for the collection of solid waste, heads this department.

Another task monitored by this department is the collection of bio-degradable wastes. Segregation of the waste is also done in order to carry out the recycling process. Transforming the collected waste into manure for the usage of farmers is also a part of the task of a nagarpalika's solid waste department. In addition, this department is also in charge of applying new techniques for the collection, management and recycling of waste.

8. Education Department: An education officer heads the Education Department of a Municipal Corporation. Providing elementary education to children of every age group is an essential task of this department, under the 'Rashtriya Saksharta Mission'. Under the supervision of the education officer, the department develops and runs municipal schools within its jurisdiction. Camps to encourage the education of the girl child, adult literacy and computer education, are also part of the education department’s duties. This department also supervises the teaching staff at these school and camps; and monitors their payroll process, annual increments and leave sanctions.

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