In another example of ambitious civic projects being undermined by administrative laxity, the BBMP has announced it could end a project to plant 1.6 lakh seedlings this year.
Little more than a lakh of these seedlings can be planted next year, while the remaining are unlikely to survive. The seedlings that were to be planted included trees such as mahogany, badam, tabebuia, neem and honge.
The project involved the plantation of 1.6 lakh plants at 11 locations-one in each of the eight zones and three at landfill sites at Yelahanka and Bommanahalli.
Even as monsoon was the ideal season to plant seedlings, administrative delays at the Palike held up the tender process for the project. The BBMP finally called for tenders only in August but it took another four months to complete all formalities. The Palike issued job codes for the project only in the last week of November.
The delay was attributed to the fact that there were no standing committees in the Palike as the mayoral elections were delayed this year. Even though these committees were finally constituted in September, the files related to seedlings were pending before one of the panels for nearly two months.
Brijesh Kumar, BBMP’s chief conservator of forests, said 6.2 lakh seedlings have been kept in the Palike’s nurseries in Bangalore. “All these seedlings are of different height and are kept in bags of different sizes. We fear we cannot preserve the tallest seedlings till next year as we do not have bags for that size. There are 57,000 such seedlings,” he said.