Bengaluru

BBMP to fight proposed move by govt. to bring back advertisement hoardings in city

It’s been almost a year since the BBMP decided to ban all forms of advertisement hoardings to protect the city’s aesthetic.

It’s been almost a year since the BBMP decided to ban all forms of advertisement hoardings to protect the city’s aesthetic.   | Photo Credit: file photo

Urban Development Department’s draft rules will pave the way to put up hoardings

The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) is set to fight the Urban Development Department’s proposed move to bring back advertisement hoardings in the city.

It’s been almost a year since the civic council decided to ban all forms of advertisement hoardings to protect the city’s aesthetic.

However, the Urban Development Department’s BBMP Advertisement Rules, 2019, notified on July 15, attempts to upend the civic body’s stand on the matter and pave way for hoardings in Bengaluru.

BBMP officials said they were not consulted on this. A senior councillor said that councillors, across parties, were opposed to the UDD’s draft rules that overlooked the BBMP Outdoor Signage and Public Messaging Policy and Bylaws 2018. As per the notification, the State government will consider any objections and suggestions by any person and reply from BBMP submitted by the end of the month.

A former Mayor also claimed that the State government notified the new draft rules without consulting senior councillors.

“Over the past year, several citizens have come up to us and congratulated us for banning hoardings. We will not allow the hoardings to come back again,” he said.

The BBMP council will meet on Monday [July 29] to discuss their plan of action. “The councillors have decided to oppose the proposed draft rules published by the UDD and pass a resolution in this regard. W will submit this as an objection to the UDD,” said a senior official.

The civic body’s argument against hoardings is strengthened by the fact that they have been a poor source of revenue for the last 10 years or so. “Public safety, the city’s aesthetics and environment considerations outweigh the revenue aspect. We were collecting just around ₹30 crore a year,” said the councillor.

After the council’s unanimous decision to ban all advertisement hoards, the civic body drafted the BBMP Outdoor Signage and Public Messaging Policy and Bylaws 2018. “Over 750 objections were received, of which 90% were from advertisers. All the objections were turned down, as they were against the council’s resolution,” the official stated and added that the draft was sent to the government seeking approval on January 1, 2019. Clarifying that the civic body’s bylaws were completely different from the UDD’s draft rules, the official said since the government had not taken any action on the draft that was submitted, it is deemed to be approved.

The issue is further complicated by the fact that the matter is in court, and that the BJP is preparing to stake its claim to form a government.

Advertisers are hopeful that the UDD’s rules will be implemented. Manmohan Singh, secretary of the Outdoor Advertising Association Bengaluru, feels that the BBMP’s policy and bylaws are skewed and not meant for a commercial city like Bengaluru.

“Once the UDD’s rules are notified, it will replace all other legislations, including the BBMP’s advertisement policy and bylaws,” he added.

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Printable version | Feb 26, 2020 5:14:38 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/bangalore/bbmp-to-fight-proposed-move-by-govt-to-bring-back-advertisement-hoardings-in-city/article28713856.ece

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