The Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) Council on Saturday decided to withdraw all projects (that have not been taken up) given to Karnataka Rural Infrastructure Development Ltd. (KRIDL), earlier known as the Karnataka Land Army, for execution. For once, the elected body was united in its demand to withdraw the projects.
Jayamahal councillor N.K. Gunashekar raised the issue of increasing number of potholes on city's roads.
He said that while the officials claimed that pothole filling had been entrusted to KRIDL, officials of KRIDL claimed that the BBMP had not provided them details regarding roads.
Mr. Siddaiah told the councillors that 341 works worth Rs. 83 crore had been entrusted to KRIDL. A few works were under progress while some were yet to be taken up. The council later resolved not to give any work to KRIDL and order an inquiry into the projects executed.
Cutting across party lines, the councillors urged BBMP Commissioner Siddaiah to take action against the officials who had come to the BBMP on deputation and repatriate them to their parent departments if they had worked for more than three years in the civic authority.
Councillor Gangabyraiah of Dr. Rajkumar Ward raised the issue and sought information on the number of officials who were in BBMP on deputation from various government departments.
He said as per the Karnataka Municipal Corporations Act, 1976, only engineers from the Public Works Department could be deputed to the BBMP's engineering department.
However, several officials from the Karnataka State Finance Corporation, Karnataka Power Corporation Ltd., Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board, and the Karnataka Small Scale Industries Development Corporation were working in the BBMP, he said.
“A clerk from the Chickballapur Municipal School is working as tax inspector in the Byatarayanapura zone. A lecturer from a corporation junior college is now a manager of a market. None of the officials on deputation want to go back to their parent departments. They are a financial burden on the BBMP,” he said.
Responding to this, Mr. Siddaiah said that he would direct the officials to ensure that those on deputation did not continue in the BBMP for more than three years.
He said that he would review the cases where excess officials had been posted and assured of tightening the administration.
Mayor S.K. Nataraj urged the Commissioner to ensure that the excess staff were sent back to their parent departments immediately.
The issue of Ganesh Mandir Ward councillor S. Govindaraju was raised in the meeting.
The councillor was recently caught by the Lokayukta while he was accepting bribe from a building owner.
Speaking on his behalf, Leader of the Opposition M. Nagaraj said that in his (Govindaraju's) ward, a building was being constructed in violation of building bylaws. He sought to know if the BBMP had powers to stop the construction work.
The jurisdictional engineer claimed that the BBMP had issued show cause notice.
He said that a caveat had been filed in this connection. The Commissioner said that BBMP had powers to stop the construction work and initiate action against the officials for allowing deviation.
The council later approved various works worth Rs. 55.12 crore.
The other issues that were discussed in the BBMP council meeting included dog menace, garbage clearance, unauthorised hoardings, digging of borewells, legal cell, misuse of the Right to Information Act, distribution of sewing machines to beneficiaries, concrete roads and spread of H1N1, dengue and chikungunya.