Hubballi: Former chief minister and senior leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party Jagadish Shettar has alleged that the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) has passed a resolution assigning works worth Rs 4,200 crore to Karnataka Rural Infrastructure Development Limited (KRIDL) violating the rules.
Speaking to press persons here on Sunday, the former chief minister said that this step was taken only to benefit some of the contractors who helped the ruling coalition financially during the elections. Work orders of these projects have been issued without calling tenders, he alleged.
The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike, which is being run by the coalition partners Janata Dal (Secular) and Congress, under its Nava Bengaluru Project had allotted Rs 5,000 crore for various development works in the 2018-19 and 2019-20 Budgets. However, the state government which could not utilise the funds before March 31, has now resorted to misusing the funds by transferring them to Karnataka Rural Infrastructure Development Limited, which is headed by Venkatesh (an Indian Forest Department officer), claimed Shettar.
Venkatesh is a close relative of Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy and Janata Dal (Secular) national president H. D. Deve Gowda. The state government has resorted to such tactics to ensure that contractors, who helped the party during the recently concluded parliamentary elections, are benefited, said the former chief minister.
The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike cannot pass any resolution now, as the model code of conduct is still in force. Even the Karnataka Rural Infrastructure Development Limited can only sanction projects worth Rs 2 crore without tender.
However, the state government has tweaked the rules to benefit contractors of their choice, he asserted.
Shettar said that they have filed a complaint with the Election Commission asking it to stall the State government's proposal adding that the Bharatiya Janata Party will intensify its protest if the state government goes ahead with the projects. Shettar also said that the differences in the Bharatiya Janata Party over the candidate for the Kundgol bypoll have been resolved and party leaders and workers would strive to ensure the victory of the candidate S. I. Chikkanagoudar....