The cash-starved Chandigarh Municipal Corporation is all set to spend an amount of Rs 9 lakh on the Teej event which is likely to be held on August 11 or 12 at Shivalik Gardens, Manimajra. Special Phulkaris at a cost of Rs 1 lakh have been arranged only for women councillors, wives of officers and wives of male councillors. One singer and artistes have been arranged at a cost of Rs 2 lakh.
Sources said that an amount of Rs 2 lakh will be spent on refreshments for VIPs and Rs 3 lakh on waterproof tent, lighting and sound. The remaining amount will be spent on decoration of stage, venue, videography and invites.
It was decided by the Arts, Culture and Sports Committee of the Municipal Corporation. Chairperson of the committee, Shipra Bansal, said that they had almost finalised the details.
“It is a simple event. We are trying that stalls be put up at the venue so that we can earn revenue from them and expenditure on the event be neutralised,” Bansal told Chandigarh Newsline.
Congress Councillor Devinder Singh Babla, who is a member of the committee, said that spending this amount is waste of money.
“Even if it is an annual event, there are different ways of celebrating it,” Babla said. “Why waste a single penny when civic body doesn’t have sufficient funds to carry out development work in the city?”
He added, “No new development work is being taken up only because there are orders that there are no funds but here we are wasting Rs 9 lakh only for entertainment.”
Last year during the Teej event, the Municipal Corporation had spent Rs 6.90 lakh despite the then Mayor Asha Jaswal directing the officials to curtail the expenditure and avoid any kind of lavish events in order to save public money.
Mayor Davesh Moudgil said, “Teej is important to celebrate so that youth know about their roots and culture.”
“This expenditure has been chalked out after curtailing a lot. Moreover, it is an annual affair and we want the coming generations to know about their roots and culture. Also, we are considering if the event can continue for two days,” Moudgil said, adding that he had been doing his best to improve the financial condition of the civic body.