BBMP officials favoured defaulting firms for skywalks: BJP leader

BBMP officials favoured defaulting firms for skywalks: BJP leader

BJP leader N R Ramesh on Friday accused the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike authorities of doing undue favours to six advertisement companies by allowing them to construct skywalks in the city.

Ramesh said in a press release that these firms have defaulted payments of Rs 31.68 crore to the BBMP while putting up advertisements on bus shelters. The BBMP had assigned construction of bus shelters to private firms under the public-private partnership model. The firms, which built the bus shelters, had the advertisement rights for five years. In return, they were supposed to pay the Palike advertisement tax and ground rent.

In December 2014, when the advertisement contracts for bus shelters were terminated, the six firms owed BBMP Rs 66.06 crore. However, they paid only Rs 34.37 crore. Ramesh, however, did not provide names of the blacklisted firms.

“The Palike officers did not make any effort to recover the pending amount. These officers colluded with the defaulting advertisement companies and pinched the files pertaining to the balance amount from Palike office. The assistant commissioner of BBMP had even lodged a complaint with the BMTF on December 22, 2015 about the missing files,” said Ramesh.

Now, the Palike has gone ahead and awarded the contract for the construction of skywalks to these six firms, which is illegal, claimed Ramesh.

The BJP leader has lodged a complaint with the anti-corruption bureau against the Palike officers who are favouring these advertisement companies.

The claim was made a day after the BBMP passed a resolution to build 28 skywalks in various parts of the city. There were no discussions on the pros and cons of the advertisement rent as the opposition BJP had staged a walkout over the alleged atrocities on one of their corporators.
DH News Service

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