BJP suspects 10-member body is an attempt to undermine the BBMP’s authority

The state unit of the BJP on Thursday urged the government to withdraw the Vision Group constituted for coming up with an integrated vision for the development of Bangalore, saying the move undermines the authority of the democratically constituted Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP).

Speaking to presspersons, Rajajinagar MLA S. Suresh Kumar said the group has 10 members, five of whom are non-officials.

The chairman, Ramesh Ramanathan, has sworn loyalty to the ruling Congress party, he said.

The sole intention of the government in forming the group is to rule Bangalore through its proxies, he alleged.

Unlike Bangalore Agenda Task Force (BATF) and Agenda for Bangalore Infrastructure Development (ABIDE), which had only a recommendatory role, the Vision Group has been given powers to implement its recommendations through the Additional Chief Secretary (Urban Development), overriding the supremacy of the Palike.

This, Mr. Suresh Kumar said, defeats the stated objectives of the 74th amendment to the Constitution that intended decentralisation of powers to local governments.

Mayor Katte Satyanarayana said the government does not provide any assistance to the Palike, which is facing a severe financial crunch.

At the same time, it chose to form the Vision Group, which is loaded with ruling party sympathisers and ministers.