Citizens demand transparency in formation of ward committees by Mysuru City Corporation

Citizens demand transparency in formation of ward committees by Mysuru City Corporation

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Malavika GubbiVani started this petition to Commissioner of Mysuru City Corporation and

Ward Committees and Area Sabhas (WCAS) are essential platforms for citizens, of any city, for public participation in local administration. It is a right conferred to us by the Constitution of India by way of 74th Amendment in 1991.

Unfortunately this important platform, a right of the citizens, is being actively denied to us by politicians at all levels for the last three decades, particularly at the level of Municipal Corporations. It is up to us, the citizens of Mysuru, to assert our right and demand a transparently elected or nominated and accountable Ward Committee, comprising of all sections of the society, more particularly well educated and knowledgeable persons and who can speak on behalf of the local residents about various civic problems affecting our daily life. Most of all, these people must be willing to work as volunteers and keep an eye on the massive corruption and mismanagement going on in Municipal Corporations.

Some spirited citizens succeeded in going to the High Court with a PIL to force the Mysuru City Corporation to form the Ward Committees and Area Sabhas(WCAS) and the Council has now approved a resolution to form such WCAS but with Ward committee members as selected by local Corporators and the Mysuru City Commissioner is supporting this. You can realize the honesty and efficiency of WCAS when only yes men of a local corporator are members of such committees when serious issues of ward level fund management, planning, civic services such as solid waste management, water supply, streetlights, poverty alleviations programmes are concerned.

Hence we demand transparency in the nomination of ward committee members and that it should be formed by way of calling for applications from Mysuru Citizens by publishing/ advertising the formation of such WCAS and details of applications in newspapers, by the MCC Commissioner. Any non-political person who wishes to work for the betterment of the city of Mysuru should get an opportunity and not necessarily just followers of political leaders.

As responsible citizens, we are sure you will sign this petition and make it go viral.


6th August 2021


The Commissioner

Mysuru City Corporation, Mysuru

Kind Attn Sri Lakshmikant Reddy, IAS Commissioner, Mysuru City Corporation

Dear Sir,

Subject:  Procedure for formation of Ward Committees and Area Sabhas in Mysuru Municipal Corporation

Greetings from citizens of Mysuru!

We are happy to note that the Mysuru City Corporation Council has passed a resolution to go ahead with the formation of ward committees and Area Sabhas as per the Hon’ble High Court’s order.

But we are also perturbed by a news report that a list of 10 Ward Committee members already prepared by Councillors is going to be revised and announced as the fresh Ward Committee list. 

We wish to register our objection to the procedure of Councillors deciding the names of Ward Committee members as it defeats the purpose of having Ward Committees, which are expected to hold the Councillors accountable to the community.  Our experience of this procedure adopted by BBMP indicates that this leads to nepotism and favouritism by Councillors, who nominated their spouses, relatives and their political party workers as members.

We wish to recommend that Mysuru also follow the participatory, transparent and democratic process adopted by Mangaluru Municipal Corporation and also by Hubballi-Dharwad and Davangere municipal corporations.  They have issued public advertisements calling for applications from citizens.  In Mangaluru, applicants were asked to provide affidavits that they do not have criminal cases against them and that they are not affiliated to any political party "which would bias their decision-making". A selection committee was also set up to scrutinize, verify and finalise the names. Now objections to any undesirable names are also being called from citizens. A system free of nepotism and favouritism has been adopted, which was lacking in the case of BBMP.

Also, we wish to present the following extracts from the KMC Act which go against councillors being asked to nominate members of ward committees.  We believe that it is only the Commissioner who has powers to do so for the following reasons, as you would also be aware:

i) As per Section 64 (1) of the KMC Act on the “Functions of the Commissioner”, the executive power for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this Act, which “imposes any duty or confers any power on the corporation shall vest in the Commissioner”. Therefore, we believe that the power to nominate the members of the ward committee vests with the Commissioner and not the Councillors; 

(ii) Section 64 (1) of the KMC Act further says clearly that this executive power of the Commissioner is subject to the approval or sanction of the corporation only “whenever it is in this Act expressly so directed”. Since, there is no specific direction under the KMC (Amdt.) Act of 2011 that approval or sanction of the corporation (general body) is required by the Commissioner to nominate members of the ward committee, we believe that the Commissioner himself is authorised, or rather, required to do so, and he is not required to seek the approval or sanction of the Council;  

(iii) Section 66 of the KMC Act says that “the Commissioner may delegate his ordinary power, duties and functions to any officer of the Corporation subordinate to him”. The officers appointed under Sec.82, 83, 84 etc., of the KMC Act, 1977, are officers subordinate to the Commissioner. But the commissioner cannot delegate his ordinary power to councillors as the councillors are not subordinate to the Commissioner.  Hence we believe that the delegation of the Commissioner’s powers to them would be ex facie illegal;

(iv) Further, nowhere do the KMC Amdt. Act of 2011 or Ward Committee Rules of June 2016 give councillors executive powers to nominate the ward committee members, or the right to interpolate in this matter. Hence, we believe that councillors have no power under law to nominate members of the ward committee and if they are being asked to do so, they would be illegally exercising this power; 

(v) Since the ward committee members are expected to monitor the functioning of the councillor at ward level, and ensure that he/she functions in a transparent and accountable manner, it would be counter-productive to make councillors themselves nominate the members.

We hope you will take our suggestions into consideration and follow the democratic procedures followed by other municipal corporations in this regard, which we have outlined above.

Thanking you in anticipation.

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