This year, BBMP budget to be 'realistic'

Govt puts Rs 5,500 crore cap on budget likely to be tabled on July 22

This year, BBMP budget to be 'realistic'

Drawing lessons from the blunders in the past, the Bruhat Bangalore Mahangara Palike (BBMP) is preparing a ‘realistic budget’ this year.

Following the State government nod to Mayor D Venkatesh Murthy to present the budget, the BBMP machinery has started working day and night to prepare the budget. However, the officials dealing with budget preparation have been strictly told that the budget should be a realistic one this year unlike previous years.

For the last five years, the BBMP has been presenting highly inflated budget showing a very rosy picture of Bangalore. In the budget, it always expected huge revenue from various sources and earnest desire to undertake many ambitious projects, mainly those related to infrastructure. In the last five years, it presented budget somewhere between Rs 7,000 crore and Rs 10,000 crore.

The realisation of the budget, however, was always less than 50 per cent. For instance, in 2011-12 a budget of Rs 9,196 crore was presented but the realisation of the budget remained around Rs 4,000 crore.

The size of the budget last year was Rs 9,998 crore but, according to the Palike sources, the implementation is hardly 35 per cent.

This year the Mayor and the BBMP commissioner M Lakshminarayana are learnt to have directed the Palike officials to prepare a realistic budget between Rs 5,000 crore and Rs 5,500 crore. The budget should not make wild assumptions about the revenue as had happened in the previous years where about Rs 700 crore was expected from the private telecom companies. The Palike budget planners had expected huge revenue from the optical fibre cables, laid by the telecom companies.
Similar expectations were made from the advertisement companies, that have put up illegal hoardings.

Sources added that the thrust of the budget this year will be on infrastructure projects. To top all the infrastructure projects would be implementation of the five signal-free corridors. The Palike will also take up widening of some roads.

Budget on Monday?

The mayor has directed the officials to prepare the budget to be presented on July 20, Saturday. But the officials involved in preparing the budget, have sought two more days’ time. They have requested Mayor and the Commissioner to present the budget on July 22.

“We doubt that we will be able to prepare the budget, prepare speech copy, get it translated into English and then get everything printed by July 20,” said a Palike officer.

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