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BBMP's misplaced priorities

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Pedestrian Infrastructure
On the one hand, we have been reading repeatedly in the press that the BBMP is broke, and not in a oposition to pay contractors' bills in hundreds/ thousands of crores. On the other, is this splurge on Eurocon tiles for the footpaths in 3rd block, Koramangala (near Embassy Tranquil).
 
Well, nobody would have grudged them that, if at least the tiles had been laid properly. The pictures tell their own tale.
 
 
 
A friend, who drives past the road regularly, tells me that the pavements have now become the ideal parking spaces for cars. So, was that the intent, to begin with? The car tyres don't complain about the uneven surfaces, or a few broken tiles, here or there too, I guess. 
 
Muralidhar Rao
 

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dvsquare's picture

I have taken a few photos

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I have taken a few photos this monday, and here are the examples how owners are thinking of these footpaths as their extended garage.

 

Deepak

 

amithpallavoor's picture

The next PIL against BBMP

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The next PIL against BBMP shall be as regards the maintenance of streetlights.

The Karnataka government has come out with a poorly drafted Right to Recall Sarpanch law. In my opinion. right to recall should have been extended to the municipality level as well.

murali772's picture

some rare thick skinned lot

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The Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) contractors gheraoed Commissioner M Lakshminarayana on Monday for not clearing their bills for several months. While some abused the Commissioner, others tried to manhandle him, forcing the police to intervene. - - - - A contractor said, “The bills of those who take a Letter of Credit from influential people are are cleared. But we have loans to repay.” - - - - Another contractor blamed councillors. “Every time, BBMP authorities assure us that they will release funds. But we are fed up as no money has been released,” he said.
 
For the full text of the report in the New Indian Express, click here
 
In the opening post, I had mentioned about news reports of the BBMP being broke. So, this the latest in the almost once-in-a-month series. And, the "influential people" talk, apparently points to how works such as reported in the opening post get done. Even with matters reaching the stage of the Commissioner, none less, being almost manhandled, we never seem to learn the lessons. Some rare thick skin it calls for!
 
Muralidhar Rao
murali772's picture

Now, it's the turn of the electrical contractors

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They alleged that about 125 contractors had not been paid for 20 months. “We have families and the workers depend on the salaries we give. If we do not get money, all will suffer,” said Shridhar, president of the BBMP Electrical Contractors Association.

All street lights are managed by the BBMP and complaints from consumers are routed to these workers. “We have been working without payment for several months and all are in debt,” said KS Mohan. He added that it is difficult for 125 contractors to maintain workers without any salary.

If the BBMP fails to clear our dues, we will turn off the street lights, including those where the BBMP commissioner resides.

For the full text of the report in the New Indian Express, click here.

The imbalances in the budgeting itself have been brought out here, and even years after these anomalies have been pointed out, the government is just not bothered about effecting the necessary correctives.

The question also arises as to how many of the neta's even understand the baiscs of governance. They are there essentially because of their ability to get votes largely through doling out "bhagya's".

Muralidhar Rao
murali772's picture

Nero fiddling as Rome burns

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Reddy said, “The civil work will be completed by the end of the month and the government has allotted an additional Rs 8 crore for beautification of the lake. The officials will work closely with the citizens to finalise plans for further development.”
 
For the full text of the report in the New Indian Express, click here.
 
The job, undertaken by the BDA, is almost complete - check the picture accessible here, taken in June last year. There are some small jobs remaining (costing perhaps a few lakhs at the most), which are also getting the necessary attention and should get completed soon, thanks also to the efforts of Mr Ramalinga Reddy. In the midst of this, the allocation of Rs 8 cr by the BBMP, for just the beautification of the lake, even as it is said to be broke and not in a position to pay 20-month old bills of its contractors, leading in turn to their workers and families left starving, is rather strange, to say the least. 
 
Yes, strict governance practices should not allow for diversion of funds allocated in the budget under one head to another. But, when things have come to such a pass, questions arise on all of the exercises involved. Is there anyone to answer?
 
Muralidhar Rao
murali772's picture

maha bhrashta palike

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Lokayukta sources said the BBMP Contractors’ Association approached Upa Lokayukta Justice Subhash B Adi on March 24 seeking directions to BBMP to clear pending bills on seniority. They alleged that the chief accounts officer and accounts superintendent were overlooking seniority for a cut. The association had also lodged a complaint with SP Sonia Narang the same day.
 
After receiving the complaint from Association president R Ambikapathi, Justice Adi had directed both the officials to furnish the details of the number of contractors, pending bills, seniority arrangement, if any, and the list of persons who have already been paid, by March 31. However, the officials failed to comply with the directions.
 
The complainant had accused Chief Accounts Officer Kanakaraju and Superintendent of Accounts Narayanaswamy of collecting bribes to the extent of 5 to 6 per cent of the bill amount and only those bills for which bribes were paid were cleared indiscriminately. Nearly `500 crore has been paid arbitrarily without due regard to seniority of the pending bills, they alleged.
 
The officials allegedly harrased the contractors who did not pay bribes by making them run around their offices for a long time, the complainants said.
 
For the full text of the report in the New Indian Express, click here.
 
For payment release, it is 5 to 6%. For being added to the eliginility list, it would be x; for short-listing - x1; for award of contract - x2. All put together, the estimate ranges from 25% to 75%. That's the kind of tax payers' money that's being frittered away by the Maha bhrashta Palike, that the BBMP has become. 
 
Muralidhar Rao
abidpqa's picture

BBMP street level work

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BBMP is concreting the streets mainly in outskirts of the city. Most of these streets had strorm water drains. To prepare for concreting the stomwater drains were filled up. This is poor planning. It is true that waste water was also flowing in those drains. But after concreting is done, the rainwater has to flow on the roads. The sanitary pipes laid by BWSSB I believe is low quality sandstone pipes.  Sometimes, it seems concreting is done to protect these pipes. There is also no provision to stop the breeding of mosquitoes in these sanitary pipes like nets, etc.

abidpqa's picture

Dust, stormwater drain

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When there are no stormwater drains, the dust does not have any place to go when street is swept or even in rain, or it has to be carried out. It can only go up and the houses around becomes dusty.

murali772's picture

Road to No-where in the heart of Koramangala

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This extravaganza, obviously the brain-child of the local MLA (more on him is accessible here) came in for some harsh criticism (and deservedly too) from prominent citizens of the local community, on the "SaveKoramangala YahooGroup". Some of it is reproduced below:

M1: Here is a brilliant 4 lane highway. Its in Koramangala. Its built to international standards - its 10 inches thick, 35 ft wide and half a Kilometre long. Crores have been spent. There is one small problem. It leads to nowhere. No vehicles use it.
 
The land value in that area is 18000 Rs per sq foot. The land available there is close to 3.5 Acres approx. It's now populated entirely by a pack of stray dogs and pups who are defecating all over the International Quality Road. The pups are looking for some tender human flesh to sink their teeth into as a substitute for a teething ring. This puts off even pedestrians from using this highway as a thoroughfare -- not to mention that avoiding the dog poop lying all around isn't very pleasant.
 
The workers there don't seem to have much to do. They are busy feeding the above mentioned dogs and pups and the pack is growing steadily emboldened by the day.
 
There is enough space on the concrete road to park upto 150 cars without obstructing "traffic". There is a huge amount of space on either side set aside for "gardens". The space for these gardens can be used for doing the entire garbage transfer in Koramangala.
 
M2: and the real tragedy? Most of us - with a few exceptions will in the next elections go out and vote for someone who will propagate the same. some of us will even campaign for these people!!!
 
In Koramangala, we have the most vibrant of RWA and Civil Society groups, that's the envy of the rest of the city, and whose members are in constant touch with the MLA too. All the same, he does not appear to have taken any of them into confidence while planning and going about this work. The conclusions are obvious. 
Muralidhar Rao
Abraham Kuruvilla's picture

Now that BBMP is being

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Now that BBMP is being superseeded, when would somebody be avaiable to answer your very vaild questions?

 

Sanjeev's picture

Govt of Karnataka 2500 Crore projects for Bangalore ???

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If the GOK is willing to spend so much money from its pockets,  then why BBMP is so bankrupt ??  

Infrastructure works worth Rs 300 cr. sent to begin in city

http://www.thehindu.com/n...

Close on the heels of committing itself before the Supreme Court to hold elections to the BBMP within three months, the State government is in the process of rolling out massive infrastructure works at a cost of Rs. 3,500 crore.

Most works are expected to be completed within six months to a year, while three major projects would require about two years’ time.

Disclosing this to reporters on Monday, Bengaluru city in-charge Minister Ramalinga Reddy said the funds included unspent an amount of Rs. 1,000 crore from the allocation under the Nagarothana scheme in 2014-15, the present year’s budgetary allocation of Rs. 1,500 crore and an additional allocation of Rs. 1,000 crore announced by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah a few days ago. The proposed works include widening of Sarjapur Road, Bannerghatta Road, Tannery Road, Varthur Road, Dinnur Main Road and Subratho Mukherjee Road, besides construction of multi-level parking facility at Freedom Park and Gandhinagar.

These works will be in addition to the proposed matrix of elevated corridors comprising a North-South corridor from Central Silk Board to Hebbal and two East-West corridors from Jnanabharathi to Whitefield and KR Puram to Goraguntepalya. Rs. 50 crore has been earmarked for preparing a detailed project report for this endeavour.

3 flyovers, 2 years

A steel flyover would be built on a two-km stretch of J. C. Road from Minerva Circle to Town Hall at a cost of Rs. 139 crore. A 700-metre steel flyover would be built on Race Course Road at a cost of Rs. 57 crore, according to Bengaluru city in-charge Minister Ramalinga Reddy. A concrete flyover would come up on a stretch of 2.4 km between Ejipura and Kendriya Sadana at a cost of Rs. 214 crore, he said and noted that it would take about two years to complete these flyovers.

 

 

murali772's picture

question of accountability

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BBMP has not only failed to provide better infrastructure for citizens but has also failed to look after its own employees: It has not deducted the statutory payments like PF from BBMP employees' salaries in any of the eight zones.- -  - Rao alleged that this is a serious offence and the officials concerned are liable to face criminal action. He said, "Deducting statutory payments and not remitting them within the stipulated time is a serious offence. This has been going on for months together and very likely with the full knowledge of the erstwhile BBMP commissioner for which he could be criminally liable."

For the full text of the report in the Bangalore Mirror, click here.

Now, it can't be that, as the Bangalore-in-charge minister, Mr Ramalinga Reddy (more on him is accessible here), was not aware of this. As such, he should also be held liable.

And, is this the person who is going to be lording over the so-called city development works projected to cost Rs 3,500 cr, cited in the post above? Shouldn't such massive works follow after a comprehensive plan has been put in place? And, for that, to begin with, hasn't there to be a visioning exercise to understand how we would like to see the city evolve in future? Have such thoughts ever crossed the minds of these worthies?

For all of the city's prowess in IT and so many other fields (including sports), it is unfortunate that there's such mediocrity in our political leadership.

Muralidhar Rao
srinidhi's picture

BBMP smells rotten

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"Residents of Kasturinagar, east Bengaluru, are puzzled why a newly blacktopped road in the area needs to be asphalted again, in less than a month. 

Last month, they couldn't believe their luck when the arterial Kasturinagar Main Road was blacktopped. But again on May 2, residents were flummoxed to find that BBMP had floated a tender for asphalting and other works on the same road. "

more here

No transparency is the biggest bane of this city's administration and everyone wants to look away!

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