Tycoons to rule Electronic City

Tycoons to rule Electronic City

Electronic City, Bangalore’s information technology (IT) hub that has brought distinction to the State, has got “Industrial township authority” status, paving way for tycoons to secure administrative powers over the area, including collection of property tax.

In a recent notification, the Urban Development Department has brought an area of 903 acres and 11 guntas under the “E-City Industrial Township Area,” comprising Electronic City Phases I, II and III, excluding it from the jurisdiction of the local bodies.

Legislation paving way for the setting up of the industrial township authority was passed in 2002 by making amendments to the Karnataka Municipalities Act, 1964. However, successive governments had put the enactment of its provision on the back burner citing various reasons.

Electronic City becomes the first industrial area in the State to come under the jurisdiction of the “industrial authority.” Five members, representatives of companies in Electronic City, were recently nominated to the authority. The 10-member authority will formally come into existence once five more nominees from the government side, from the departments of industries, town planning, urban development and an urban planning expert, are appointed.

Autonomy

The authority will have municipal powers, including collection of property tax, maintenance of the region and regulation and construction of buildings among others, sources in the Urban Development Department told Deccan Herald.

Other functions include plann­ing for economic and social development, water supply for industrial and commercial purposes, solid waste managem­ent, protection of environm­ent and promotion of ecological aspects, provision of urban amenities and facilities such as parks, garden and playg­r­o­u­nds, public amenities, including street lighting, parking lots, bus stops and public conveniences.

Electronic City houses some of the top IT and IT enabled services hubs, including Infosys, Wipro, Hewlett Packard and HCL Technologies. Now, the region is maintained by the Electronic City Industries Association.

The IT hub had been kept out of the jurisdiction of the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) and fell under Doddathoguru and Konappana Agrahara gram panchayats. The companies in Electronic City were paying their property tax to the panchayats. Now, with the establishment of the township, the law mandates that 30 per cent  of the property tax collected by the township authority shall be remitted to the panchayats.

Last year, the BBMP  atte­m­p­ted to get Electronic City und­er its jurisdiction. The move did not materialise as it was opp­osed by the industries. Once the functioning of the township authority stabilises, industriali­s­ts will elect their representatives.

Bommasandra and the Peenya Industrial Area are the other two hubs shortlisted for special status by the government, the sources added.

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