BENGALURU: Has mayor Gangambike Mallikarjun been reduced to a mere figurehead in the BBMP? Be it flooding, garbage collection or upkeep of markets, BBMP officials don’t seem to be paying any attention to what she has to say. The tussle between them was clearly visible when Ms Mallikarjun inspected the flood -hit areas of the city recently.
The mayor, who asked for an explanation from the engineers for the flooding during her May 13 inspection of BTM Layout and other parts of the city, was informed that the shoulder drains were not desilted and the storm water drain network in the area was not yet completed. They pleaded for 20 more days to do the job. When she wanted to know the reason for the delay, they replied carelessly that the monsoon was still some days away and they would finish the work by then.
Ms Mallikarjun , who herself recounted the incident to the Deccan Chornicle, lamented that some engineers were bringing disrepute to the BBMP. “ It is because of staff like them that the whole civic agency has earned a bad name. Instead of waiting for the monsoon to come, they could have finished the work much earlier,” she pointed out.
The stando-off between the babus and the elected representatives in the BBMP is also clearly visible in garbage management. While the mayor and the councillors don’t want the wet and dry waste to be collected separately, the officers do.
And when the mayor was asked what she intended to do about the illegal vendors, who were back in business at the K R Market, all she could tell this newspaper was that she would speak to the special commissioner in charge of it in the BBMP, but could promise nothing herself.
Ms Mallikarjun, however, seems to be getting ready to become more assertive. She plans to visit 182 vulnerable spots in the city to check if steps have been taken to prevent flooding in these parts and ensure that engineers don’t get away with neglect this time....