Mumbai: The Worli police, in a letter to the assistant municipal commissioner of G-South ward (Worli), has sought to know if the use of the BMC seal and rubber stamp by a former corporator is illegal. The letter went on to state that if it is illegal, a BMC officer should be asked to lodge a complaint.
However, the RTI activist on whose complaint the police sent the letter said he was “surprised” at the move as his complaint as a citizen was sufficient to act against the former corporator. “Why do they need BMC officers to come and complain? I am from his constituency and he has misused it. They should register a case anyway,” said Anand Bhandare
The matter pertains to former corporator Santosh Kharat from Worli who was also deputy chairman (legal and revenue committee) and a member of the improvement committee in the BMC. Mr Kharat, on his official letterhead, had complained to the police against Mr Bhandare of Marathi Abhyas Kendra stating that the latter was defaming him.
Mr Bhandare had filed RTI applications and based on that, he put up details of the work done by the corporator. He had also put up banners in the area, regarding which the corporator had complained. “He complained on the official letterhead when he was not a corporator. He had misused the seal so that his complaint had some force and effect on the police,” said Mr Bhandare.
Interestingly, Mr Bhandare learned through RTI that there is no provision for the BMC to take action when he filed a complaint with them. “It said that penal action can be taken but before any such action, the corporator should be informed that the official seal and stamp of the BMC cannot be used by them. Action will be initiated only if they continue to do so,” he said.
Meanwhile, Mr Kharat said he had stopped using the BMC seal and stamp the moment officials warned him. “A person does not always have a new letterhead handy and sometimes it takes time to get a new one. I am trying to register a case against him and hence he is also trying to do the same,” Mr Kharat said.