'Set uniform guidelines'

Lokayukta frowns at political hoardings, banners

 Taking note of a complaint against city BJP president Vijender Gupta for putting up hundreds of signboards and hoardings in his name across the city, Lokayukta Justice Manmohan Sarin on Monday said blaming municipal officials is not fair.

Instead, he said Delhi unit presidents of all national parties, commissioners of the three municipalities and Delhi chief electoral officer Vijay Dev should work together and come up with uniform guidelines in such a matter.

“Let us not get into naming individuals or blame just the officials. I think, and I am sure you will agree with me, that leaders across all political parties indulge in putting up hoardings and banners, which causes inconvenience to people,” said Justice Sarin.

“The best thing will be that all the stakeholders should get together and reach some uniform guidelines that are followed by all parties,” he said, while issuing notice to the parties concerned in the matter.

Case history

The case dates back to February 28, when Prashant Vihar resident Rajesh Garg had complained that Vijender Gupta, municipal councillor from Rohini, had put hundreds of hoardings in the area. In his complaint, Garg had said that Gupta had misused his influence of being a councillor in complete violation of the provisions of the Delhi Prevention of Defacement of Property Act, 2007.

“These signboards and hoardings obstruct free movement of people on pavements and footpaths, and are threat to road safety norms, besides causing damage to public property,” Garg had stated in his complaint.

It was also during hearing in this case that Justice Sarin came to know that even a signboard related to his office was fixed on a pavement, following which he ordered its removal.

Another signboard related to the income tax office was removed from a pavement near ITO Vikas Sadan and brought to the notice of the Lokayukta.

Appearing before court on Monday, joint income tax commissioner S K Upadhyay told Justice Sarin that the signboard has been removed, and the damage caused to the pavement will be repaired soon.

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