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Report: Callous officials caused Rs 1,268 crore loss to Palike

Report: Callous officials caused  Rs 1,268 crore loss to Palike

The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) has suffered a loss of Rs 1,268.70 crore due to callous and corrupt officials in nine years since the 2006-07 fiscal, says the Palike's Accounts Audit Report.

The Chief Accounts Officer had prepared a brief note summarising the loss, which was later sent to the BBMP Commissioner, Special Commissioner and the BBMP Council Secretary. It is supposed to be tabled before the BBMP Standing Committee on Accounts.
At a press conference, Opposition BJP leader in the BBMP Council, Padmanabha Reddy, released the Palike note. He said the objection note by the Accounts Audit Report necessitates the recovery of Rs 3,948.79 crore. Of this, Rs 1,268.70 crore could not be recovered. He added that Palike officials could be trying to waive the recovery of the dues, which are taxpayers’ money.

Reddy noted, “Had the officials made a sincere effort to recover the amount, debts would have been reduced substantially and the Palike’s financial condition would have improved. Non-recovery amounts to dereliction of duty.” Reddy sought to know why the Palike administration moved this audit summary to the Accounts Committee. He demanded that the Palike administration ensure recovery of loss from the officials concerned.

The losses were primarily due to five departments of the BBMP -- general administration, education, revenue collection, health department and the public works department. The Palike also inherited losses from financial irregularities in town municipal corporations and village panchayats after they were merged with the Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike to form the BBMP in 2006-07.

Scam during BJP tenure
When it was pointed out that the financial irregularities he was referring to happened during the BJP's tenure in the State as well as the BBMP, Reddy said irregularities should not be seen from the political prism. Between 2006 and 2010, there was no elected body in the BBMP and the Palike was under the direct control of the BJP-ruled government. Between 2010 and 2013, there was an elected body in the Palike ruled by the BJP which also was in power in the State.

“The fault was primarily of the officials. Wasn't I aware that the period I am referring to was the one BJP ruled in the state as well as the BBMP? The officials were at fault and the political class cannot be blamed for the loss,” Reddy explained.

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