Bengaluru: Political leaders, citizens demand immediate BBMP elections

Bengaluru: Political leaders, citizens demand immediate BBMP elections
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Bengaluru: Political leaders, citizens demand immediate BBMP elections

Highlights

BBMP elections: Delay in holding elections to the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) is being viewed with concern by both political party leaders and citizens.

Bengaluru: Delay in holding elections to the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) is being viewed with concern by both political party leaders and citizens. Political leaders are of the view that several civic issues are not being addressed with seriousness in the absence of elected representatives (corporators).

As Covid cases are showing signs of decline, there is a demand for holding BBMP elections by the election commission.

As per a poll conducted by Janaagraha, 91 per cent of participants agreed on the need for corporators for ward-level changes. On the ocassion of Democracy Day, political leaders from various parties came together to address the issue of delay in holding elections. Leaders also expressed the view that ward-level issues are not being addressed effectively.

"Without BBMP Council the interests of the Bengaluru citizens cannot be protected. Forums like ward committees will not be meaningful, without Corporators because they know every nook and cranny of their wards," said Srinivas Alavilli, Head, Civic Participation, Janaagraha.

Panellists argued that even the Covid-19 mismanagement and the property tax debacle could have been easily prevented the city had elected representatives. "Each MLA has seven and more wards in their jurisdiction. How can they focus on issues of all citizens in such a large area?" asked Shilpa Abhilash, Indian National Congress and former Corporator of New Thippasandra ward. They pointed out that development work used to get expedited when corporators were there.

"If the BBMP council was there, people would not have suffered as much as they did during the second Covid wave." "Corporator plays a huge role in implementation of all welfare schemes, minute developments. Local problems cannot be resolved without local Corporators," said Abdul Wajid from Congress and former Corporator from Manorayana Palya ward.

"By delaying BBMP elections, the State government aims to take control of the Rs 10,000 crore BBMP budget," alleged Lalithamba B.V, Campaign Manager, Bengaluru Navanirmana Party. The leaders alleged that the State was acting against the interests of the 74th amendment.

Criticizing the new BBMP Act, Abdul Wajid said, "The State government wants to get a unique Act for Bengaluru. I can't see anything new in BBMP Act 2020. It is a cut and paste of KMC Act."

Questioning the motive of the government for delaying elections citing the Covid pandemic as the reason, they wanted to know how elections were conducted in several other States and panchayat elections in districts in Karnataka.

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