Govt looking at banning vaastu compliance in its offices

The recent controversy stirred over the demolition of an office wall at the Vidhana Soudha by the chief minister’s political secretary, to make it vaastu-compliant, has pushed the Karnataka government to take steps to protect its buildings.

The government will table an amendment Bill, seeking to ban all vaastu-related activities inside the government-owned buildings, including the Vidhana Soudha. The Bill, which will be assessed in the winter session of the State Legislature, will ban not only civil works, but will also prevent religious rituals from being performed in public offices in the name of ‘vaastu dosha shanti’.

The draft ‘Karnataka Legislature Salaries, Pensions, Allowances and other laws (Amendment)’ Bill aims to prevent vaastu-related pooja, homa and any other activities that are against the secular features of the Constitution, damage to the original plan of government buildings and financial burdens from being placed on the government.

The issue reached a fevered pitch after Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar’s Political Secretary Shankar Patil Munenkoppa recently demolished a wall bifurcating room no 340 and 340A at the Vidhana Soudha to make it vastu compliant.

But the idea of altering government offices without permission is nothing new. Sources said that many ministers take up minor civil and other repair works at offices and residential bunglows allotted to them soon after assuming office.

Council Chairperson D H Shankaramurthy, who has been accused of also undertaking civil work at his office in the Vidhana Soudha, said that senior Janata Dal (Secular) leader M C Nanaiah had wanted to bring a private bill in this regard.

Instead, the government had informed him that it will take up the responsibility and the amendment bill will be brought in the coming session.

In addition, the Karnataka Control of Organised Crime Bill, 2009, which the President of India had returned, and the Karnataka Land Revenue (Amendment) Bill, 2012, which the Governor returned recently, will be placed again before the House, Shankaramurthy said. The winter session of the legislature is scheduled to start in Belgaum on December 5.

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