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Single event, many cards, many RSVP

Invitation Card

All the invitations prepared had not followed the protocol  

There are at least four invitation cards that have been in circulation on the social media group for a single event. However, none of the invitations (except Municipal Corporation) follow the protocol of the state government or say collector’s guidelines. It is alleged that the invitation sans protocols.

The BJP-led MBMC has scheduled a ceremony on 16th, May to inaugurate various developmental projects including- Buddha Vihar, a swimming pool, distribution of flat keys to slum dwelling beneficiaries under the BSUP project and the 90-meter hydraulic aerial ladder platform (HALP) firefighter.

Mayor Jyotsana Hasnale has published the program pamphlet from his office and has written the name of Devendra Fadnavis, the Leader of Opposition in the Assembly, at the top, beating the Union Ministers names as per protocol. Therefore, the mayor has violated the rights of the Union ministers. It is being done intentionally to include former MLA Narendra Mehta even though the violation of Government Circulars, General Assembly Resolutions, and Municipal Circulars mention protocols.

Earlier, Municipal Corporation printed the invite. However, the mayor fumed over the invitation after seeing the other chief guest’s name along with LoP Devendra Fadnavis.

Mayor-Commissioner spat

The civic chief has maintained that the cards have been printed in accordance with the government guidelines. It should be noted that rules are already in place mandating prior permission from the Mayor with stress upon maintaining decorum and adhering to government guidelines while printing names of invitees on invitation cards and their seating arrangement to be made as per protocol for municipal functions and ceremonies.

“Buddha Vihar or other programs will be inaugurated taking care that the rights of any member of the Legislative Assembly, members of the Legislative Council, MPs and the Mayor will not be infringed. Municipal Corporation has prepared an invitation with the approval of the District Collector. Accordingly, the program of the municipality will be carried out,” said Dilip Dhole, Municipal Commissioner, MBMC.

However, there was a difference of opinion between Mayor Jyotsna Hasnale and Municipal Commissioner Dilip Dhole over the invitation card for the event. The mayor has expressed displeasure that she will not attend the event if Mehta’s name is not printed. Therefore, she printed another card from her office.

Narendra Mehta’s invitation card

Former BJP MLA Narendra Mehta has published the invitation card with the signature on his letterhead and posted it on his Facebook. This has led to a new controversy. In this invitation card, Mehta has been mentioned as a special guest along with other present MLAs, MPs and MLCs. MLA Pratap Saranaik has written a letter to the mayor and asked her if the name of a controversial former MLA is included in the invitation card, then the names of all the former MPs and former MLAs from the city have to be included in the letter. Therefore, according to the protocol decided by the Collector, the invitation card of the municipality should be printed.

Other dignitaries of the event

In the draft of the mayor’s letter, all Bhumi Pujan and inaugurations are mentioned by the Leader of Opposition in the Legislative Assembly Devendra Fadnavis and his name is at the top. In the lower row is Union Minister of State Ramdas Athavale and Union Minister of State Kapil Patil, Leader of Opposition in the Legislative Council Pravin Darekar, Urban Development Minister Eknath Shinde and Housing Minister Jitendra Awhad. Shiv Sena group leader Neelam Dhawan has accused the mayor of abusing his position for his own political gain by naming non-members of the House without considering the government’s circular and etiquette.

Earlier, a case was registered against former BJP MLA Narendra Mehta, corporator Sachin Mhatre, corporator Sujata Pardhi and seven others for holding a bhumi puja ceremony before getting the work order for the beautification of Mahajanwadi Lake in Kashimira on mayor’s request. Now it seems that she is struggling to get his name published in the invitation prepared by the municipality for publicity and show off.

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