Mangaluru, Sep 30, 2018: Mangaluru City Corporation (MCC) faced the heat and ire on Sept 29, Saturday for its inaction against owners of high-rise buildings who had converted parking space for commercial purposes.
BJP’s Corporator Sudhir Shetty identified over 20 high-rise buildings which had illegally converted their parking spaces into vehicle showrooms, bar or restaurants. “The basement of Saibeen complex, located opposite MCC, had been turned into Burma Bazaar,” he charged.
Officials clarified that with some owners filing petitions in court, no action could be initiated against such buildings. MCC Mayor Bhaskar K directed officials to cancel door numbers of all 23 such high-rise buildings identified by MCC.
Participating in the discussion, MLC Ivan D’Souza said that the Smart City mission was a failure not only in Mangaluru but in other cities in the State as well. He called the special purpose vehicles (SPVs, which are companies) floated for the implementation of the projects under the mission as “private companies” offering poor representation for the elected representatives. The SPVs were being dominated by bureaucrats. Many of the projects mooted under the mission were through the public-private partnership (PPP) mode to promote private interest, he said. The MLC questioned why foundation stones for some projects under the mission were laid in Mangaluru in a hurry even before the projects had been finalised.
It forced the Mayor to announce that he would call a special meeting of the council next week to discuss the projects under the smart city mission.
The BJP corporators accused MCC Mayor and Commissioner of being partisan in allocating funds for developmental works. The meeting was disrupted as the corporators trooped into the well of the house and staged dharna twice. The corporators withdrew their protest when the mayor promised to release funds to wards which had not received any grants.
Officials also informed on launching a special drive against consumers who had not paid their water bills from first week of October.