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BBMP split certain: Bengaluru to copy London governance model

Top sources in the government told DH that the government was planning to file an affidavit before the High Court of Karnataka asking for more time to hold the municipal elections as it wants to fully restructure the BBMP. The government believes the BBMP, under its present composition, is unable to manage the city.
Last Updated : 12 June 2024, 23:02 IST

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Bengaluru: The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), the civic body that governs India’s IT capital, is set to be split into multiple corporations.

The state government is considering adopting the London model to restructure the civic body into three tiers of governance, consisting of an apex body on top and about 400 wards at the decentralised level. Some parts of Bengaluru’s outskirts that have witnessed rapid growth will likely be brought under the city limits.

Top sources in the government told DH that the government was planning to file an affidavit before the High Court of Karnataka asking for more time to hold the municipal elections as it wants to fully restructure the BBMP. The government believes the BBMP, under its present composition, is unable to manage the city.

Home Minister G Parameshwara indicated the same on Wednesday. “Dividing the corporation will enable effective administration. Cities like London have many councils which are effective. The responsibility of managing the city’s problems will also be decentralised. The deputy chief minister will decide on the number of corporations,” he said.

A committee led by retired IAS officer BS Patil has been the force behind the plan of restructuring the BBMP. It had first submitted its report along with a draft Greater Bengaluru Governance Bill in 2018, when Siddaramaiah was the chief minister. The report was gathering dust until the Congress-led government came to power last year.

It’s learnt that the committee has been asked to update its report by including the fast-developing areas — on Bengaluru’s outskirts — that can be included in the new corporation limits.

However, there is no consensus on whether the BBMP should be split into three corporations or five. The confusion prevailed even during the meeting chaired by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Monday where Deputy Chief Minister DK Shivakumar and other lawmakers from Bengaluru were present.

Finally, the committee was tasked with suggesting the number of corporations, it’s learnt.

In all likelihood, the bill will be introduced before the legislature session scheduled to start in July.

The law department has been asked to vet the draft bill prepared by the
committee.

A retired IAS officer said he is not convinced by the idea of splitting the BBMP. Giving the example of Mumbai and Chennai, he said the BBMP can run the city more
efficiently as it is not the sole provider of services in Bengaluru.

“Services such as water, electricity and even solid waste management are outside the BBMP’s purview. Corruption is the root cause of Bengaluru’s infrastructure woes. Unless that is rooted out, no reform will stand out,” he said.

On the table for discussion

Like London, an apex body called Greater Bengaluru Authority for integrating all other parastatals such as Bescom, BWSSB, BDA, etc 

Three to five smaller corporations and about 400 wards, each with a population of 25,000-30,000 

Corporation limits to expand by 200 sq km from the present 741 sq km

Bangalore Development Authority will continue to exist

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Published 12 June 2024, 23:02 IST

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