Know your Mumbai Municipal Corporation

By Accommodation Times News Service

Q.1. When did the Mumbai Municipal Corporation Act comes into existence?

Ans. The above said Act came into force in the year 14-9-1888 and it now extends to Mumbai City, Central Suburbs till Mulund & Western Suburbs till Dahisar.

Q.2. In Corporation how many Councilors are there? What is the duration of their term?

Ans. There are 221 elected councilors. 5 are nominated Councilors. Normally the terms of councilors are five years. If the Corporation is dissolved then their term ends.

Q.3. Which are the Municipal Authorities as per the Bombay Municipal Corporation Act, 1888?

Ans. As per Section 4 there are 9 authorities as per the Act (a) Corporation (b) Standing Committee (c) Improvement Committee (d) B.E.S.T. Committee (e) Education Committee (f) Ward Committee (g) a Mayor (h) a Municipal Commissioner & (i) a General Manager of B.E.S.T. Undertaking.

Q.4. Who can stand for Ward Municipal Election?

Ans. As per Section 14- A person who has completed twenty one years on the last day of making nomination and who is enrolled  in the Election roll as a voter of any ward.

Q.5. Who decides the disqualification of Municipal Commissioner?

Ans. As per Section 33 Chief Judge of the Small Causes Court is empowered to determine the disqualification of Municipal Councilor who is declared to be elected for Councilor if disputed election is also questioned on the ground of corrupt practice. If he is satisfied that a candidate has committed such practice in that even he may set aside the election of such candidate.

Q.6. Who conducts Municipal Election?

Ans. As per Section 18A the State Election Commissioner conducts the election and controls the preparation of electoral rolls. He can delegate his power to State Government Officer not below the rank of Deputy Collector or Officer of the Corporation not below the rank of the Asst.  Municipal Commissioner.

Q.7. Whether election Commissioner can requisition any premises & vehicles for the purpose of election?

Ans. Yes. Any person who is an owner or in possession of premises or vehicles, on receipt of requisition order in writing has to comply with this order. He will be paid compensation for the same as per government rules and regulations.

Q.8. What are the consequences, if the owner or occupant does not obey requisition order?

Ans. Requisition authority or any officer deputed by them can summarily evict the person from the requisitioned premises.

Q.9. What are the consequences if any person votes in Election by in personification?

Ans. If it is found that the person has voted in personification then he will be taken into custody and criminal prosecution can be initiated against such a person.

Q.10. Who can file Municipal Election petition and where? On what grounds?

Ans. Any person enrolled in the Municipal Election roll can file Municipal petition before Chief Judge of the Small Causes Court on the following grounds:

a) Disputed qualification of elected Councilor.

b) Corrupt practices.

c) Election Petition should be filed within 10 days from the date of publication of the results by Election Commissioner.

Q.11. What happens if Election of Councilor is set aside by the Court?

Ans. If the Court does not declare any other candidate as elected then it is treated as casual vacancy and State Election Commissioner may hold Election to fill casual vacancy.

Q.12 Who can be Mayor and Deputy Mayor? Can a nominated Mayor become a Mayor or Deputy Mayor?

Ans. After General Election, in the first meeting, the Mayor and Deputy Mayors are elected from amongst the 221 Councilors. The term of Mayor is two and half years. The nominated Mayor cannot become a Mayor or Deputy Mayor.

Q.13. Who is the leader of opposition?

Ans. An elected Councilor who is the leader of the opposition party having highest numerical strength of Councilors and which is recognized as such by Mayor is the leader of the Opposition.

Q.14. How many members are in the Standing Committee?  Does the Standing Committee have power to sanction expenses above Rs.20Lakhs?

Ans. The Standing Committee consists of twenty seven councilors. After General Election the corporation shall in their first meeting appoint twenty six Councilors out of their own body to be members of the Standing Committee and the Chairman of the Education Committee shall also be a member of the Standing Committee. This is the very important committee in the Corporation which has power to sanction for more than Rs. 20Lakhs.

Q.15. How many members are in the Improvement Committee?

Ans. The Improvement Committee consists of 26 Councilors. The Corporation shall in their first meeting which is to be held in April after each General Election appoint 26 Councilors as members of the Improvement Committee. One half of the members shall retire on the first day of April every year. The Corporation shall in their Ordinary meeting in the month of March every year appoint fresh members on the Improvement Committee to fill the officers of those previously appointed by them who have retired.  In this way the balance half Committee is elected and the strength of the Improvement Committee remains of 26 Councilors.

Q.16. How many members are in the Best Committee?

Ans. The Best Committee consists of 17 members and the Chairman of the Standing Committee shall be the ex-office member of the B.E.S.T. Committee.

Q.17. The Municipal Commissioner is appointed by whom?

Ans. Municipal Commissioner is appointed by the State Government for such period not exceeding three years. However Government may renew his appointment for not more than three years.

Q.18. What are the duties of Corporation?

Ans. Corporation has obligatory duties and discretionary duties. There are twenty obligatory duties like construction and maintenance of drains, drainage work. To supply water for public and private purpose. To register the births and deaths, construction of public markets and maintains schools for primary education etc.

Q.19. What are the discretionary duties of Corporation?

Ans. There are 19 discretionary duties of Corporation, like slum improvement and up gradation, maintenance of public parks, garden etc. and any measure not specially named likely to promote public safety, health, convenience or instruction. For example corporation makes all arrangements for Ganesh Visarjan and Ambedkar Jayanti.

Q.20. What is the duty of Corporation towards pauper, lunatics?

Ans. As per Section 62E of the Bombay Municipal Corporation Act, 1888 the Corporation has to make  payment at the rates fixed by the State for the maintenance of such lunatic, asylum, in hospital or home; Provided if the pauper, lunatic is a resident of Mumbai for a period of more than one year.

Q.21. What are the duties of Municipal Commissioner?

Ans. Municipal Commissioner has entire executive power specifically imposed or conferred upon by this Act, to prescribe the duties and exercise control supervision on all Municipal Officers except Municipal Secretary and staff working under him. He is responsible for implementing the decision of the Corporation and statutory committees.

Q.22. In case of disaster or unforeseen event who takes the urgent steps to save the life and property in Mumbai?

Ans. In case of storm, earthquake, House Collapses or accident or unforeseen event involving or likely to involve  danger or loss of human or animal life the Municipal Commissioner will take immediate action with the approval of the Mayor and in the absence of mayor Municipal Commissioner will take all necessary steps and has to report to Standing Committee of Corporation.

Q.23. Whether Corporation can ask Municipal Commissioner to produce any record or correspondence or document?

Ans. Yes, Municipal Commissioner is expected to comply with requisitions made by Corporation expeditiously. If such compliance is prejudicial to the interests of Corporation or Public, Municipal Corporation legally defer such compliance and he should declare the next meeting. However Corporation is empowered to form a committee to whom Municipal Commissioner will disclose the documents. Then Committee after examining the documents will take decision, whether the same should be disclosed or not? Committee’s decision is final.

Q.24. Who can execute contract on behalf of Corporation?

Ans. Municipal Corporation can execute contract after the prior approval of standing committee in case of contracts involving expenditure of more than Rs.20,00,000/. Contracts involving expenditure for less than Rs. 20Lakhs the Municipal Corporation can execute contract without the sanction of Standing Committee.

Q.25. Can Standing Committee amends or alters the proposal of Municipal Corporation?

Ans.  No. Standing Committee cannot amend or alter the proposal of Municipal Corporation. At the most the Standing Committee can call information or further clarification from Municipal Commissioner.

Q.26. Whether Corporation can acquire the Property?

Ans. Yes, Corporation can acquire the Property within or without the limits of Brihan Mumbai for the purpose of this Act only.

Q.27. In what manner the Corporation can acquire the immovable Property?

Ans. The Municipal Corporation can acquire the Property by agreement. However they have to obtain prior approval of the improvement committee in case the compensation to be paid exceeds Rs. 5, 00,000/-. If the compensation exceeds Rs.2, 00, 00,000/- then the Corporation’s sanction is necessary. Every contract related to acquisition of immovable property shall be executed by Municipal Commissioner and shall have the common seal of the Corporation affixed on such Agreement.

Q.28. What is the remedy if it is not possible to acquire the property by an agreement?

Ans. If it is not possible to acquire the property by an agreement then in that event Municipal Corporation can take steps to acquire the property under the Land Acquisition Act with the approval of improvement committee/corporation. On the request of Municipal Corporation the State Government will take necessary steps to acquire the required property for public purpose.

Q.29. Who can sell or dispose Municipal movable & immovable property?

Ans. Municipal Commissioner can sell the municipal moveable property worth not more than Rs. 5Lakhs at a time. The Municipal Commissioner can grant a lease/license of any immovable property for any property for less than one year at a time. The Municipal Commissioner can sell or lease Municipal property for a period before beyond one year with the approval of concerned Statutory Committee & Corporation. The decision of Corporation is final in all such matters.

Q.30. Can Municipal Commissioner Leases the municipal property at rate less than market rate?

Ans. No. Only in case of a declared slum, co-operative societies formed by officers & servants of corporation, trusts registered under Bombay Public Trust Act, exclusively for medical and educational purposes could land/property of Corporation be leased at a rate less than market value of the property.

Q.31. Whether Rent Act is applicable to municipal premises?

Ans. No. Rent Act is not applicable to Municipal premises.

Q.32. Whether Rent Act is applicable to the premises, where Municipal Corporation is the tenant of premises?

Ans. Yes. There are many such cases pending in the Small Causes Court against Corporation for eviction for breaches of tenancy agreement or non payment of rent.

Q.33. What is the procedure for enclosure of Balcony?

Ans. The Procedure for enclosure of Balcony is as under:-

An Application has to be made to the Ward Officer along with the prescribed fee, along with a copy of the plan of the Balcony. Thereafter the officer of the Bombay Municipal Corporation come and inspects the premises and grants the permission for enclosure of Balcony. The applicant can thereafter enclose the Balcony. The applicant has to pay the prescribed fees for the same. If the applicant has already enclosed the Balcony then the Ward Officer has the power to regularize the case on receipt of the application. The Ward Officer will prescribed the penalty and same will also have to be paid by the applicant.

Q.34 what is the procedure for converting a Residential Premises to a premises to be used for Commercial purpose?

Ans. As per the Circular bearing No. 4398/1462/CR-231/98/UD-11 dated 21/11/2000 issued by the Urban Development Department certain properties being utilized for residential purposes can be permitted to be utilized for commercial purposes. It needs to be emphasized that these properties should be in residential Zone with Shop line R-2 (R-2) and Commercial Zone (I-1, I-2 & I-3). It needs to be emphasized that certain conditions have to be complied with. Broadly speaking the conditions include (a) making sufficient arrangement for balcony of vehicles; (b) In R-2 Zone office/commercial use should not exceed 30% of the total built up area; (c) the permission should be normally not more than 400 sq. meters. The plan for the change of user has to be submitted through a licensed Architect to the Executive Engineer- Building Proposals Department and after the plan is approved the Applicant can convert his residential premises for commercial activities. It needs to be emphasized that the property tax as well as water charges would increase as there has been a change of user from residential to commercial.

Q.35. What is the procedure for converting a Garage, which is used for Car Parking, to be used for Commercial purpose?

Ans. Garages for Car Parking are sanctioned by B.M.C. for parking of vehicles only. It needs to be emphasized that the same are not included in FSI calculation. Therefore such conversion is not permitted by the Corporation. However, if there is extra F.S.I. or the benefits of TDR are available to the said property then such garages used for Car Parking can be regularized for commercial activities. It needs to be emphasized that many times garages are utilized by the authorities for carrying out their commercial activities. Even the Property Tax is paid at enhanced rate but then also this should not imply that member can utilize the same as a matter of right. Recovery of Property Tax is done by the Assessment Dept. whereas the plans for change of user are approved by the Building Proposals Department which has got nothing to do with the Assessment Dept. It needs to be emphasized that if the ward Office decides then they can initiate action under Maharashtra Regional & Town Planning Act, 1966. In fact if a prosecution is initiated under section 52/53 of the M.R.T.P. Act, 1966 then the same is a nonbailable offence. The police authorities in such circumstances can, at their discretion grant bail. There have been instances people have been put behind bars for their various acts of commission and omission.

Q.36. What is the procedure for obtaining a certified copy of the building plan?

Ans. The Applicants Architect will apply to the Ward Officer; thereafter the Ward Officer will instruct his sketches to sketch the copy of the building plan from the original copy. Thereafter the copy of the certified plan will be given to the Applicants Architect.

Q.37. What are the rates of Water Charges, when the premises are used for residential purpose? What are the rates of Water Charges if the premises are used for Commercial purpose?

Ans. The rates of Water Charges, where premises are used for residential purpose is Rs. 5/- for 10,000 Liters. The rate of Water Charges, if premises are used for Commercial Purpose is Rs. 120/- for 10,000 Ltrs. The Corporation reserves right to increase the charges at any point of time.

Q.38. What is the procedure for filing an appeal for reducing the ratable value of the property?

Ans. If the applicant is aggrieved by the ratable value as fixed by the Bombay Municipal Corporation then you should file an appeal against the ratable value as fixed by the Bombay Municipal Corporation as per Bombay Municipal Corporation Rules the appeal should be filed within the prescribed period that is from /11/2000 to /12/2000. While drafting the appeal the below mentioned points should be emphasized, if the same are applicable.

1. The Property is adjacent to slums.

2. A lot of nuisance is caused because of Beer bar, Flour Mills etc. which is near the

3. The ratable value of neighboring buildings is much less.

Q.39. Can a member covers the parking stilt?

Ans. No. Parking stilt cannot be covered. It is an open space. It needs to be emphasized that while submitting the plans certain areas are shown as open space and parking stilt is normally shown as open space. The open spaces are not included in FSI calculations.

Q.40. Can a member covers the Terrace?

Ans. No. A member cannot cover the terrace. The terrace is also shown as open space and members cannot cover the same. It is not included in FSI calculations.

Q.41. Can the builder sells the Terrace to a member and deprives the other member of the open space rights as shown in the Bombay Municipal Corporation record?

Ans. No. Pursuant to the High Court Judgment in the matter of Commercial House Block Owners Ltd. Vs. Vishaldas Shyamdas & Anr. (1981 Bombay-CR-716) this act is illegal and the builder cannot sell the Terrace to a member.

Q.42. What is the importance of Occupation Certificate as received from the Bombay Municipal Corporation?

Ans. Occupation Certificate is a very important sanction. Without this Certificate the people are not permitted to occupy the premises. If the premises are occupied without Occupation Certificate then the Municipal Corporation can prosecute the occupants under section 353case of the Mumbai Municipal Corporation Act, 1888.

Q.43. What is the importance of Commencement Certificate as received from the Bombay Municipal Corporation?

Ans. When the Applicant submits Application for development under section 337 or 342 of the Mumbai Municipal Corporation Act, the same is verified and if approvable IOD is issued by the Corporation. Still Commencement Certificate is received to start the work the Developer cannot start the construction activity. The Commence Certificate is issued under section 44 of Maharashtra Regional & Town Planning Act, 1966. If the Corporation withholds the Commencement Certificate or puts onerous condition in that event the Developer/Owner can file an Appeal before the Urban Development Minister under section 47 of the said Act.

Q.44. What is the importance of Completion Certificate as received from the Bombay Municipal Corporation?

Ans. The Completion Certificate is a very important Certificate.  That means the work is complete in all respects pursuant to conditions of I.O.D… In Bombay normally Developers do not obtain Completion Certificate. After the Occupation Certificate is obtained normally the Developers do not take steps to complete. Completion of IOD conditions which are necessary before the issue of Completion Certificate. As the water connection is granted after receipt of occupation certificate, the occupants are not affected regarding the receipt of Completion Certificate in respect of the said building.

Q.45. Can a society constructs an office in the Societies premises? Is the construction of office exempted while calculation the Floor Space Index (FSI) ?

Ans. Yes.  The society can construct an office premises in their building. However the office area between 120 sq. ft. to 240 sq. ft. is exempted from FSI depending on area of flat in the said building. When the work is seen under construction development is carried out without obtaining Commencement Certificate, notice under section 52/53 is issued by the Ward Officer calling property upon the person to remove the unauthorized work. The Ward Office may intimate the concerned Police Station to file prosecution against the person who has carried out the work without valid permission. This offence is not available.

Q.46. What is the procedure for obtaining an additional Water Line from Bombay Municipal Corporation?

Ans. If the premises do not have sufficient water supply the occupants may make Application to the Hydraulic Engineer’s Department through Licensed Plumber for additional water connection. The additional connection may not be given to the individual. It may be given to the society considering the inadequacy of water supply only.

Q.47. Is the Bombay Municipal Corporation entitled to charge Sewerage Taxes in both the bills that is Property Tax Bill and Water Charges Bill?

Ans. Yes. Normally the sewerage taxes are added in water charges bills but the same is collected by Assessment Department of Corporation.

Q.48. What should a Flat holder do if the shop keeper on the ground floor is causing nuisance?

Ans. If the shop keeper on the Ground Floor is causing nuisance it is not possible to stay in the residential flat. In that event the Complaint may be made to the Ward Officer and the Society to take steps for abetment of nuisance.

Q.49. Is the Society supposed to obtain permission from Bombay Municipal Corporation before starting major repairs? Does the society have to pay specified amount for Water Charges and the Debris Charges?

Ans. If the work are of the nature of tenantable repair then it is not necessary to obtain the permission from the Corporation but if it needs major repairs in that event it is necessary to obtain permission from Corporation and society has to pay the water charges, debris charges etc..

Q.50. Is the permission of the Bombay Municipal Corporation required for demolishing the part of a hall inside the flat?

Ans. Yes.  As per the Development Control Regulations Act, 1991 for demolishing the part of the wall inside the flat requires permission.

Q.51. Is the Permission of the Bombay Municipal Corporation required before carrying out structural changes?

Ans. Yes. It is necessary to make an Application to the Executive Engineer Building Proposals Dept. under Section 342 of the Mumbai Municipal Corporation Act, 1888.

Q.52. What should a Flat holder do if there is leakage from the upper flat?

Ans. If there is a leakage from the upper plot the member should complain to the society and get the leakage done with the consent of the society and expenses be shared with himself and the occupant of the upper flat. If the occupant of the upper flat or the Secretary of the Society are not agreeable in that event only alternative is to complain to the Ward Officer.  On inspection by Ward staff if it is noticed that complaint is genuine the notice will be issued to the Society and its office bearers to carry out the work and comply with the notice failing which Corporation may launch prosecution against them.

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8 thoughts on “Know your Mumbai Municipal Corporation

  1. My building in Mumbai has been recently redeveloped.Due to increased utilization Of FSI, there are 24 flats instead of 14 flats which existed earlier. How do we apply for additional load of water-supply to the building?

  2. What is the procedure of converting a commercial property into residential property ? If 5 floors in the building are residential and one floor is commercial how do i convert that Into residential too ?

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