The State government’s plan to divide BBMP appears to have been put on the back burner.
In the recently-concluded Legislature session, Chief Minister Siddaramiah gave an indication in this direction, even as senior government officials told Express that “not a single file” has moved on the division of the civic body.
During the Belgaum session, Siddaramaiah had stated that there was no proposal before the government to divide BBMP at present. However, Bangalore Urban District In-charge Minister R Ramalinga Reddy maintained that the government would split BBMP soon.
In September this year, Reddy had stated that an expert committee would be constituted to look into the issue and make recommendations on the number of entities the corporation be divided into. But the government is yet to constitute the committee.
“We are in a dilemma and yet to take a decision on who will head the committee. We are looking at two officers - K Jairaj and Siddaiah (both former BBMP commissioners). Once we finalise the committee head, we will choose the remaining members,” Reddy said.
In September, former Opposition leader in the BBMP Council M K Gunashekar had urged the Mayor to convene a meeting to discuss the issue. He quoted Section 52 of Karnataka Municipal Corporations (Procedure for the conduct of business of the Corporation and Committee) Rules, 1998, and said decisions on matters like the BBMP’s division should not be taken by those sitting in the Vidhana Soudha. The Mayor had promised that a special council meeting would be held on the matter, but it is yet to be convened.
“Councillors know problems at the grassroot-level and their opinions should be considered before dividing the civic body,” Gunashekar said. However, he added that a decision on the split should be taken at the earliest, as further delay would postpone the BBMP elections.
When the civic body was renamed from BMP to BBMP, the formation of new corporation policies was very time-consuming, leading to an administrative period between 2007 and 2010.
“If we delay the division process now, a chance of another administrative period after our term is high,” Gunashekar said.
Meanwhile, BBMP sources said the civic body is yet to receive any communication from the State government on the issue of division.