BBMP is the first enemy of city, says Karnataka High Court

Court directs civic body to conduct survey of all hoardings across the city and give past three years’ data on permission granted for hoardings and fee collected

October 11, 2023 10:28 pm | Updated 10:28 pm IST - Bengaluru

The High Court has directed the BBMP to conduct a survey of all hoardings across Bengaluru and give past three years’ data on permission granted for hoardings and the fee collected.  

The High Court has directed the BBMP to conduct a survey of all hoardings across Bengaluru and give past three years’ data on permission granted for hoardings and the fee collected.   | Photo Credit: File photo

The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) is the first enemy of the city as its casual approach is not only resulting in uglification due to illegal hoardings but also resulting in loss of revenue, the High Court of Karnataka observed on Wednesday.

The court also directed the BBMP to conduct a survey of all hoardings, advertisement boards and flexes erected across the city and submit data containing details such as the number of permissions granted for such structures, the period for which permissions were granted, fee collected, and the number of such structures put up without permission, from the past three years.

Loss of revenue

“The BBMP is losing revenue due to the mushrooming of illegal hoardings due to the casual approach. But the civic body turns its back citing financial crunch when the issue of providing basic facilities is raised and the citizens are burdened with additional taxes for providing basic facilities,” the court said.

A Division Bench comprising Chief Justice Prasanna B. Varale and Justice Krishna S. Dixit passed the order during the hearing of PIL petitions through which the court is monitoring actions initiated by the BBMP against illegal hoardings.

Earlier, Senior Advocate Ravivarma Kumar, appearing for one of the petitioners, stated that those who put up commercial hoardings are required to pay a certain fee to the BBMP, but the mushrooming of illegal hoarding was resulting in a loss of huge revenue to the civic body, which had adopted a casual approach in acting against them.

Officers of the BBMP are hand in glove with the advertisers and there a hundreds of illegal advertisements, the Senior Advocate contended.

“It is the loss of revenue to the BBMP and to fill that loss you will burden the citizens. This is the problem. You [BBMP] are the first enemy of the city,” the Bench observed.

Erring officials

Meanwhile, the Bench directed the BBMP to take to the logical end on the notices issued to erring officials who have failed to prevent and act against illegal hoardings.

The BBMP, in response to the court’s earlier direction, had said that 242 notices were issued to the erring junior officers by the higher officials for dereliction of duty or slow and lethargic performance of their duties in taking action against illegal hoardings.

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