They blame him for not solving the garbage crisis in the city
A few BBMP councillors from the Opposition — the Congress and the Janata Dal (Secular) — in the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) council had just one demand on Friday. They all wanted the council to adopt a resolution urging the government to remove Rajneesh Goel as Commissioner, for failing to solve the city’s garbage problems.
Surprisingly, even a few from the Ruling Party (BJP), including N. Nagaraju and Basavanagudi councillor B.S. Sathyanarayana, expressed discontent that no development work had been taken up either.
Kacharakanahalli councillor Padmanabha Reddy went on an offensive and charged that because of the Commissioner’s failure, the councillors were insulted by the High Court. He said the court had even asked the government to supersede the council. “It is the administration and government who have failed, not the councillors. The government failed to identify land for landfills. Why should we be blamed? Even if the government supersedes the council, it is the administration, headed by Commissioner, who will have to take steps to resolve the crisis,” he charged.
Seconding him, Nandini Layout councillor M. Nagaraj said that as per Karnataka Municipal Corporations Act 1976, two-thirds of the council members can okay the decision to urge the government to recall the Commissioner and forward the same to the State government. Demanding that the council adopt the resolution, he stormed the well and staged a protest. He was soon joined by other councillors from the Congress and JD(S).
Hanunathanagar councillor K. Chandrashekar smelled a rat in the procurement of mobile phones for officials to aid them with monitoring solid waste management. “When the tenders were not floated, how was the rate fixed? The BBMP has squandered Rs. 75 lakh of tax payers’ money on these phones,” he alleged.
The councillors also objected to the non-governmental organisations having greater say in solid waste management. They demanded the Mayor not allow these organisations to hijack the council, which is supreme according to the KMC Act.
Mr. Nagaraju and Mr. Sathyanarayana lamented that though the 2012-13 budget had been approved, the programme of works were yet to be taken up. Unfazed by the councillors’ demand to oust him from the BBMP, Mr. Goel maintained that the PIL on garbage had been filed in the High Court long before he assumed charge as Commissioner. He claimed that he has always protected the interests of the BBMP and councillors in the High Court. “However, people continue to talk otherwise,” he said.