5 Palike engineers face enquiry by Upalokayukta

They failed to clear SWD encroachment, didn't submit report

5 Palike engineers face enquiry by Upalokayukta
The government has handed over the departmental enquiry against five BBMP engineers to the Upalokayukta. The engineers have been charged with failing to clear encroachment on the rajakaluve (storm-water drain-SWD) at Mahadevapura. The Upalokayukta had earlier submitted a report, recommending departmental enquiry against them.

Officials facing enquiry are Mallinath Malkapur, assistant engineer, Mahadevapura; Bhagyamma, assistant executive engineer at HAL sub-division; Raghavendra, assistant engineer; Pandurangaiah, assistant executive engineer and Malathi, executive engineer. The last three were in the SWD wing of Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike.

The enquiry was based on a complaint by RTI activist Saidatta. The complaint said two builders, B V S Reddy and Ashwathanarayana, had constructed a residential building, Mytri Apartments, in Mahadevapura, covering 66 feet of the SWD. It said the builders had converted the rajakaluve into an approach road to another building - Shilpitha Splendor Apartment - by placing slabs on it and BBMP officials had not taken any action.

During enquiry, the officials were directed to take immediate steps to clear the encroachment. The officials did not take any step even after this. They also failed to submit a compliance report to the Upalokayukta. Even after three months, the officials neither cleared the encroachment nor submitted a report.

“It is observed that Mallinath who had helped the builders close the rajakaluve had nothing to say (in the enquiry). Bhagyamma did not submit the report. A letter was also sent to the commissioner (BBMP). But he did not take any steps and informed the same to this authority,” the report by Upalokayukta Justice N Ananda said.

Rajakaluve not for roads
In the last hearing, an assistant executive engineer submitted a report saying the encroachment on the rajakaluve had been removed, but the approach road had remained untouched. The Upalokayukta report said forming a road on the rajakaluve. “If the engineers concerned did not take any action on the encroachment on the drainage, it is the duty of the SWD engineers to bring the same to the notice of the higher officials of the ward and take necessary action,” the report said. “But in the present case, the engineers have shown total inaction in clearing the encroachment and thereby committed an act which amounts to misconduct,” the report added.

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