PIL challenges non punishment of erring BBMP officials

PIL challenges non punishment of erring BBMP officials

A public interest litigation (PIL) has challenged the non-prescription of punishment against BBMP engineers and officials under Section 321B of Karnataka Municipal Corporation (KMC) Act 1976.

A division bench headed by Chief Justice Dinesh Maheshwari was hearing a petition filed by Umapathi S, an advocate who sought directions to the authorities to prescribe punishment under the Act.

The petitioner states that Section 321 B was inserted into the Act in 2007 to curb illegal and unauthorised construction in municipal corporation area by taking action against errant individuals.

The additional chief secretary is the overall in-charge of local bodies and urban development in the state. On the other hand, the BBMP Commissioner is entrusted with overall supervision and implementation of KMC Act 1976, it stated.

Even after 11 years since the insertion of the section, the additional chief secretary has not prescribed any punishment to make it enforceable and due to this, the BBMP officials who are expected to prevent such illegal construction are protected by legal lapses, it said.

Also, a legal notice was issued to the respondents after giving representations highlighting the seriousness of the issue, their assurance to issue a government order has not been implemented yet.

Following this, the petitioner approached the high court seeking its intervention. The government sought time to respond.

The court adjourned the hearing to November 28.