Bengaluru-based Mahiti Hakku Adhyayana Kendra (MHAK) has written to the Chief Secretary of the Karnataka government alleging closure of the Integrated Finance Management Services (IFMS) portal to citizens and release of ₹1,000 crore to contractors without uploading information on the portal.
It termed the closure of the portal as “a complete violation of transparency policy by the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP).”
The BBMP launched the portal for uploading all documents relating to work executed by the civic body before making payments, which is open to public.
MHAK, in the letter to the Chief Secretary, alleged that access to citizens has been barred for one month and claimed that many “bogus bills” had been paid to select contractors, bypassing the procedure, amounting to more than ₹1,000 crore.
B.H. Veeresha, a trustee of the MHAK, has written to the Additional Chief Secretary, Urban Development, and the Chief Commissioner, BBMP, and sought an enquiry.
Devoid of truth: BBMP
However, BBMP called the allegation “totally false, malicious and devoid of any truth.”
“All payments in BBMP are done through IFMS only. This year 2023-24, is no exception. We have paid about ₹120 crores of administrative and small maintenance expenses and about ₹350 crores of work expenses during the current FY until now. All the above payments were made through IFMS only. We had blocked the IFMS 72 hours prior to the election from May 6 evening and have now reopened from May 11 morning to avoid any unwarranted payments during elections. The IFMS site had also been turned off during the said period of elections,” said Jayaram Raipura, Special Commissioner (Finance), BBMP, adding that linking this to any other conclusion is “malicious and misleading”.