Huge faces of politicians loom out of hoardings and life-size posters put up in every corner of the City. While Bangaloreans detest the sights that spoil the City’s serene skyline, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) seems to overlook the eyesores. These posters are more prominent in interiors areas of the City such as in Lingarajpuram, Cox Town, Mosque Road, Wilson Garden, Shantinagar, Basavanagudi, Hennur Road to mention a few places.
Most of these posters violate the BBMP bylaws and the BBMP officials say that they have got down to the task of getting the illegal posters removed. The BBMP bylaws seek to prohibit advertisements in certain areas of the City, regulate them in non-prohibited areas, promote safety of the public, improve the visual aesthetics and encourage innovative use of design to achieve aesthetic and commercial balance. The BBMP bylaws pertaining to self-advertising clearly states: “Any person desiring to erect exhibit, fix, retain or display advertisements on banners, temporary arches, temporary hoarding, building wraps shall submit to the commissioner, in not less than 15 working days before the advertisement is to be erected or before printing copies of advertisements or painting advertisements or exhibiting them in any manner. This permission shall apply to all cases of promotional, whether of a scheme or product, for limited or open period, and for all cases of display.”
Commissioner of BBMP
M Lakshminarayana, says, “We are on the job but I think we will have to think of imposing a fine. I will have to draft a proposal and send it to the council for approval. We are getting our men to remove the posters one by one.”
Additional commissioner of police (traffic) B Dayanand confirms that the posters are definitely an obstruction to the movement of traffic. “These illegal posters are hung up just about anywhere and sometimes they block the signages and obstruct the movement of traffic. It also blocks the view of the road ahead, which leads to miscalculations and eventually, an accident. It is the BBMP’s job to remove it on a priority basis,” he observes.
The ordinary people dub these posters as an ‘eyesore’. Nabeel Alji, a medical practitioner, doesn’t understand why life-size posters with ‘small- time’ politicians are put up across the City. “I am not sure if the hoardings are legal. One sees every Tom, Dick and Harry being wished at every corner of the City,” reasons Nabeel.
Chethan Shivakumar, a biking enthusiast who often explores new places in and around the City, says that the hoardings cause a lot of inconvenience and should be banned. “As a biker, I tend to take new routes and discover new places or shortcuts in the City. These hoardings are inconvenient because they hide some important signboards, such as one-way signs and the speed limit signboards,” he states. Rehana Mujeeb, a housewife thinks these huge hoardings and posters of politicians and local corporators appear unattractive to visitors and people who come to the City from other countries. “These posters are there for weeks together and I wonder if there are any rules regarding a time limit for these posters. It is high time the authorities take a look at banning such posters in the City,” she suggests.