While the Congress holds the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) responsible for the financial degradation of the MCDs, councillors think that the real villain is “trifurcation”.

Nonetheless, the Congress brass would organise a panel discussion and rally, among other efforts, to win over Delhiites in the municipal elections due next month.

Earlier this week, when Ajay Maken, president, Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee (DPCC), released a “charge-sheet” summarising the shortcomings of the three MCDs, he charged the BJP of alleged corrupt practices and said, “The Economic Survey released by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley indicated poor functioning of the MCDs. In the Survey, Delhi ranks sixth from the bottom on transparency, accountability and participation in Urban Local Bodies. Mumbai tops the chart because of its better tax and revenue collections and has Rs 51,000 crore in fixed deposits. Today, the revenue system of MCDs is in such a bad shape that MCDs have to go to the state government with a begging bowl in hand.”

Dr Neelam Goel, Deputy Mayor of North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC), said, “After trifurcation, MCDs were promised a support fund to kick off their operations which was not sanctioned. The municipal reforms that were introduced in the 4th Pay Commission have not been implemented till date. The 12.5% of the tax amount that the Delhi government was advised to start giving to MCDs, has not been implemented since 2012. This would easily amount to Rs 3,000 crore, which would be a huge aid to the MCDs. The MCD is not a profit-earning machine. It has to be helped from outside.”

Reflecting on the current fiscal deficit of the MCDs, Kishori Lal, former chairman of the Standing Committee and a member of Congress, said: “Trifurcation was done because of political reasons. It has affected the functioning and revenue collection of the corporations drastically. I don’t think it was a good idea. East Delhi, North Delhi and South Delhi have varied demographic ­profiles. While East has a large chunk of jhuggi-jhopdis, the South has plush gentry. ­In such a scenario, it is obvious that there can be no uniformity in ­revenue collection, but if there was a single municipal ­corporation, all the revenue generated could have been distributed as per the ­requirements of the regions.”

However, Maken said, “Trifurcation was done to bring the MCDs out of the crisis they faced. Poor implementation and corrupt practices in revenue collection did not allow MCDs to revive. The BJP’s 10-year-old rule in MCDs did not benefit the people of Delhi. The Congress has a roadmap to revive MCDs and make them financially independent within two years of coming into power.”

Along with the “charge-sheet”, Delhi Congress will organise a panel discussion on Monday headed by P. Chidambaram and Jyotiraditya Scindia to release the roadmap to make all the three MCDs financially efficient.

On Tuesday, Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi will address a workers’ convention at the Ramlila ground where Maken said that the “charge-sheet” against the Aam Aadmi Party government in Delhi and BJP-ruled MCDs would be distributed among Congress workers.

Sharmishtha Mukherjee, chief spokesperson, DPCC, said, “This workers’ rally is going to be the first of its kind where all arrangements have been made exclusively by Delhi state unit workers in which our outreach organisations are playing a huge role.”