Municipal Commissioner B. Ramanjaneyulu was conspicuous by his absence at the flag hoisting at the Municipal Corporation’s Independence Day function.
Special Officer of Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation and District Collector Lav Agarwal hoisted the flag and detailed the various development and welfare initiatives taken by Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation and the projects under JNNURM.
The absence of Mr. Ramanjaneyulu, however, had given room to different interpretations. When contacted, the Municipal Commissioner scotched them stating the flag-hoisting by the Special Officer was advanced from 8.30 a.m. to 7.45 a.m. and being away from the city for two days he was not aware of it.
“Mr. Agarwal called after reaching the municipal office but since he had already arrived I did not think it proper to keep him waiting and asked him to go ahead with the programme,” Mr. Ramanjaneyulu said.
There was nothing more to it since the corporation itself had invited him for the flag hoisting in his capacity as Special Officer, he added.
He later joined the official programme at the Police Barracks.
Mr. Ramanjaneyulu’s absence was viewed in the backdrop of his reported unhappiness over Mr. Lav Agarwal, of equal rank but junior to him, being made Special Officer.
However, he attended a review meeting with the Collector last month in the GVMC following initiative taken by Minister for Infrastructure and Investment Ganta Srinivasa Rao.
During his visit to Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation on Wednesday, Mr. Agarwal had to wait for a few minutes at the Special Officer’s chambers when the keys to open it were not kept ready and directed officials to call for an explanation from the assistant engineer in charge of house-keeping.
Also irked by the lack of proper arrangement for the dance programme of the students, he called for explanation from the deputy education officer.
Earlier, the Collector garlanded the statue of Gandhi.