Palike to lift restriction on ongoing, urgent works

Other works to be undertaken after pre-audit, government nod

Palike to lift restriction  on ongoing, urgent works

The Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike on Tuesday announced the lifting of the restriction on works worth Rs 532 crore, which were stalled when the model code of conduct was in place for the Assembly elections.

The works were in various stages of execution when they were frozen. This follows the demand by corporators that urgent works in the City should be given the go-ahead.
Palike Commissioner M Lakshminarayana announced the lifting of the restriction at the Council meeting on Tuesday.

Lakshminarayana assured the House that urgent works, related to flood relief in the City, could be undertaken forthwith, while those yet to begin could be looked into once the pre-audit on their necessity was conducted and government approval secured.

The then BBMP commissioner Siddaiah had frozen as many as 1,970 works when the code of conduct was in effect during the Assembly elections. Siddaiah had directed the Technical Vigilance Cell under the Commissioner (TVCC), led by chief engineer N Devaraj, to probe whether or not the works were being undertaken. The TVCC came out with a report that 2,756 works were not being undertaken. Based on the report, Siddaiah froze the works.

“We had a meeting with district incharge Minister Ramalinga Reddy on Monday regarding the frozen works. It was decided that the works can be started in a phased manner. In the first phase, we will allow continuing the ongoing works. In the second, pre-audit will be conducted and government approval sought,” Lakshminarayana said, adding all works worth above Rs 5 lakh would be subject to pre-audit.

Stormwater drains

Leader of the Opposition in the Council, M K Gunashekar, demanded a probe into the misappropriation of funds in the stormwater drain project and action against the accused officers.

Lakshminarayana said he had a discussion with all the officers and they have been asked to submit replies. A report will be sent to the BBMP Council, he assured, while admitting to delays in executing the work due to litigations.

Help centres to be shut

The Palike will close down its help centres in view of the alleged squandering of property tax money by some tax inspectors in the City.

There are about 280 help centres, of which 64 will be closed down now, while the remaining will be shut down in a phased manner. Lakshminarayana told the meeting that citizens were not required to fill the Self Assessment Scheme forms every year, unless there was change in the building or revision of tax.

The BBMP will tie up with banks to allow payment of property taxes through them. Along with it, online tax payment mechanism will be strengthened. He said the Palike will stop property tax collection through cheques and collect the same through demand drafts and Indian Postal Orders.

Contribution for flood victims
The Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) will donate Rs one crore to the flood-ravaged Uttarakhand. A resolution was passed to this effect in the BBMP council on Tuesday after observing one-minute silence for those who lost their lives in the tragedy. Also, the corporators decided to give one month honorarium while the Palike officers and employees will give their one-day salary for flood relief.
 

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