Secunderabad Cantt on a growth path
Secunderabad Cantt on a Growth Path. On July 3, Sujatha Gupta, Chief Executive Officer, Secunderabad Cantonment Board (SCB) completed one year in office. The last twelve months have been a roller-coaster ride as the CEO went on a revamp spree. From taking on land sharks, illegal occupants, tax evaders to illegal water connections she took on one and all.
Sujatha Gupta completes one year
On July 3, Sujatha Gupta, Chief Executive Officer, Secunderabad Cantonment Board (SCB) completed one year in office. The last twelve months have been a roller-coaster ride as the CEO went on a revamp spree. From taking on land sharks, illegal occupants, tax evaders to illegal water connections she took on one and all.
One of her biggest achievements has been the restoration of defence, cantonment and central government lands and building boundary walls and displaying cautionary boards and as a result putting an end to encroachments. Twelve B 3 categories (Old Grants Bungalows) which were in possession of lease holders who had converted them into function halls were demolished as per the Ministry of Defence orders. Another 50 private lands that come under B 2 category- constructed illegally without sanction plans whose court judgments came in favour of SCB were demolished.
The SCB’s financial position touched an all time low and sensing the problem new initiatives were launched and a few that had been defunct restarted. One such initiative, issue of trade licences to business houses after a gap of 15 years generated revenue of Rs 10 lakhs. On the property tax front too Rs 18 crores was collected as on March 31, 2014, a record in the history of the cantonment. Akula Mahender, president of the Telanagana employees association said, “The previous year’s collection was 11 crores. She is a role model and leads by example. She is restless and responsible and a true team leader. Her relentless work spurs others to give their best.”The crackdown on illegal water connections too helped the cantonment generate Rs 6 crores.
A draft plan for zonal system on lines of the GHMC is in progress, once completed the SCB is eligible to draw JnNURM (Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission) grants and other central govt funds for the development of the SCB. A senior official of SCB said that the Army Head Quarters at Pune and Delhi are due to SCB towards service charges that run up to Rs 300 crores. Once that amount is released many developmental works could be taken up.
Introduction of bio-metric attendance system has led to increased efficiency and punctuality. The SCB is now mulling of introducing solar system for power supply and plans to bring down the present power bill of Rs 2 lakh per month to Rs 50,000.
Bhanuka Namada Mallikarjun, former vice president and ward member 6 of the SCB said she has seen four CEOs in the last 20 years but few could match up to her.
A detailed review and road mapping was done to increase the revenue from the available and potential resources with a target of 100 crores in the current year 2014-15 and to clear the water dues of Rs 33 crores to Hyderabad Metropolitan Water Supply and Sewerage Board(HMWSSB) is the prime target and hopeful of settling the financial burden.