Bengaluru: Is BBMP’s special commissioner (welfare), V. Rashmi Mahesh paying the price for backing locals in removing illegal hoardings in the Mahadevapura zone?
The officer, who has been absent for a few weeks now from work, was allegedly told to back off when she became a little too supportive of the people complaining about illegal hoardings in Bellandur, especially the ones defacing the lake area. Locals say the officer was very receptive when they approached her for help on the issue.
“About a month ago, we led a citizens' drive backed by Rashmi, who ensured that all illegal hoardings were removed. She wanted to ensure that the BBMP did not lose revenue as a result of these hoardings,” said one of the residents.
Enthused by her support, the people of the area even developed an app to help them take pictures of illegal hoardings and identify them through geo-tagging the geographical area around them.
“The aim of the app was to find out how many illegal hoardings there are in the Mahadevapura zone,” they explained. But just when they thought they were close to being successful in removing all the illegal hoardings, things began to go wrong.
“Three days after Rashmi aggressively launched the hoardings removal drive, things slowed down. On checking ,we were told she had been asked not to get involved. Other officials took over and failed to respond to us. Eventually, the drive took a backseat,” added one area activist, blaming the hoardings mafia for having its way.
Said a resident, "The ad mafia has overpowered honesty. We were impressed with Rashmi’s sense of duty and commitment. She was people-friendly and supported our drive. It’s depressing to see an honest officer pay the price.”