'Meagre' funds worry corporators

Demand for bringing private hospitals, paying guest houses under tax net

'Meagre' funds worry corporators

No representation: Many seats are empty in the BBMP Council Hall as ruling and opposition members skipped budget session in Bangalore on Tuesday. dh photo

While some corporators put forth a few suggestions on the budget, some delivered lengthy eulogies in favour of their party and the government. Half of the corporators who spoke, being greenhorns, appeared to have failed in comprehending the focus of the session. At one point of time the Mayor finally cut down the duration of the corporators’ speeches and asked them to raise their ward issues during the monthly sessions.

Tax on PGs

Mohammad Rizwan suggested that the Palike should bring the rising number of private hospitals and paying guest (PG) houses under the tax umbrella to boost the revenue. To a question on the lack of programmes for the youth of in the budget, Mayor S K Nataraj in all his seriousness said that proposal on sports in the budget was directed at the youth.

S Anil Kumar of BJP from VV Puram said he had suggested the Palike to impose tax on service apartments which have cropped up in the City over the past few years. It was the concern of Kushalngar corporator Noor Jaan Shariff that budgetary allocation of two crore to each ward may not suffice to address the needs.

“There are a myriad problems in my ward ranging from drinking water, health concerns and sanitary connections which need immediate attention. Allocation of Rs two crore to each ward is insufficient to address these problems,” she argued.

First timer from Kodigehalli, Ashwath Narayana Gowda sought a clarification from the Mayor and Commissioner, Siddaiah over the allocation of benefits to BBMP school children. “Most newly-added CMC areas and 110 villages do not have a BBMP school. Hence, I request the Mayor and the Commissioner to make alternative arrangements in such areas so as to pass off the benefits to children. The proposition received support cutting across party lines as the newly-formed wards on the outskirts face the same problem.

N Nagaraj from Byrasandra said that with barely six months for the completion of the financial year, it could be hard to implement projects proposed in the budget. “I would suggest the Commissioner and the Mayor to direct the authorities to keep the project estimates ready before the budget is approved by the State Government. This could save precious time before calling for the tenders and implementing the projects,” he suggested. Nagaraj further added that the Palike should keep a tab supply of filtered sand which could be used on a large scale in the Palike projects.

Gandhinagar corporator S Nataraj opposed the budget proposal to have a parking facility within the BBMP complex at Sirur park in Seshadripuram. “I believe that the parking facility in a residential locality will effect the people of my ward and only help those visiting the Mantri mall in Malleswaram.”   

Satyanarayana, Congress corporator from Dattatreya temple ward declared that he would resign if the ‘midnight tender projects’ included in the present budget was implemented before the High Court clears the case.

‘Live example’

Jnanabharathi ward corporator Govind Raj raised serious doubts on implementation of mosquito control programme for which a sum of Rs four crore has been allotted in the budget. He said he came to know from the personnel deputed to spray pesticides in his ward that only one litre of pesticide is provided for 15 days as a result of which they had add water diluting the impact.

Joining the issue, Govinde Gowda of Heggenahalli ward claimed that he was the best example for the lack of mosquito control programme. “I am suffering from dengue. Luckily it was detected in the early stages. I can only imagine the plight of the poor in such conditions.” 

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