BBMP chief apologises to HC over pothole relief

BBMP chief apologises to HC over pothole relief

Karnataka High Court. (Credit: DH Photo)

Slammed by the high court for defying its earlier order to compensate the victims of potholes, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) commissioner extended an unconditional apology on Tuesday and submitted an affidavit to the court about actions taken about its earlier order.

Resuming the hearing of public interest litigation (PIL) petition filed by Koramangala resident Vijayan Menon and others seeking directions to the the Palike to repair pothole-ridden roads, the division bench headed by Chief Justice Abhay S Oka verified the Palike’s affidavit.

BBMP Commissioner B H Anil Kumar in his affidavit submitted that the affidavit filed on November 27, 2019, mentioned that the court order was placed before the mayor and deputy mayor, leaders of the ruling party and opposition, and standing committees on major public works, finance and taxation.

“It was erroneously mentioned in the affidavit that the issue was discussed in the meeting,” commissioner reportedly submitted in his affidavit.

Furthermore, a discussion had been held with the above said elected representatives to formulate rules in the light of the court directions. “This is not an act of omission, and I express regret for it,” the officer reportedly said in his affidavit.

While giving the names of seven persons, including the mayor and deputy mayor who were present in the said meeting, the commissioner in the affidavit stated that serious efforts were being made to comply with the court orders and that he was tendering an unconditional apology for the error committed in this regard.

Kumar also stated that the civic body has already put in place grievance redressal mechanism in this case. “The special commissioner (administration) has been appointed as the nodal officer, and he has been receiving complaints about the condition of roads from the public. The same officer will also receive the applications in case of death or injuries due to potholes and decides on them after verifying with the details. If the victim has any objection, they can appeal to the special commissioner, BBMP, about the earlier decision. If the victim further requires justice, he can appeal to the commissioner,” the BBMP chief stated.

Kumar apprised the court through his affidavit that the corporation has launched ‘Sahaya’ app, and any public can complain about the poor condition of roads by uploading photographs of the bad roads, voice or video messages.

“The BBMP will attend to such complaints and replies with the photograph of the location after attending to the work. A separate Whatsapp number 9480685700 has also been published for the convenience of the public to register complaints,” the commissioner reportedly said in the affidavit. After verifying the affidavit, the bench adjourned the matter for Thursday.

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