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BBMP faces flak from freedom fighter group

Post MiD DAY's Rs 3,200-cr constituency scam expose, 100-plus freedom fighters decided to take the Palike to task for the slow pace of probe
 
Having earlier raised their voices against corruption in the state, freedom fighters have now begun taking cognizance of MiD DAY's expose of a Rs 3,200 crore scam and demanded that the BMP initiate probes in all the wards of the city.

Members of Human Rights Awareness Committee, led by Freedom Fighter H S Doreswamy (centre), protest outside the BBMP office yesterday, demanding a probe in development works in Gandhi Nagar, Malleshwaram and Rajajinagar Wards


A group of 100-plus members headed by renowned freedom fighter H S Doreswamy took BBMP to task for not initiating an aggressive campaign against corrupt officials and also lashed out at the slow-progressing probe.

"We have to drive this epidemic called corruption out of our surroundings, but unfortunately our system is not yet ready.
 
BBMP's commitment in taking on huge scams aggressively is questionable. We demand an explanation from the officials concerned in scam, and we want the Technical Vigilance Report (TVC) report in each constituency of Bangalore," Doreswamy said.

BMTF dragging feet?
The opposition on the other hand is leaving no stone unturned in efforts to exploit the situation. Also, not bringing the issue up in the last council meeting and secretly handing the matter over to the Bangalore Metropolitan Task Force (BMFT) for investigation, instead of publicly handing it over to the Lokayukta, has raised many doubts about the BBMP Commissioner H Siddaiah's action.

"We have not seen such a big scam in the BBMP and we expected the commissioner to bring the matter up in last month's council meeting, but nothing happened.
 
Also, handing over the scam to BMFT is unsatisfactory, because this particular wing has not investigated and booked anyone in a single case in the BBMP in the past," said Padmanabha Reddy, JDS, opposition leader.

BMFT differs
The BMTF, which had finished screening 58 of the 153 files it received from three constituencies, issued a warning note to the officials to come up with other 9,965 files pertaining to the constituency named in TVC report last month. The BMFT chief assured of initiating investigations in other constituencies as well.

"We are at the initial stages of investigation and it would take around six months to finish the probe. Whoever is found guilty will be booked" said Dr Rajvir Sharma, BMTF chief.

Gleaning the truth
The Palike was under the rule of commissioner in 2008, during which period most of the contract work began. The files are reportedly missing from BBMP and Siddaiah had asked the TVC to conduct an inspection and report the leakage of revenue.

MiD DAY broke the story with documents signed by the BBMP commissioner, in which he highlighted that Rs 3,200 crore had been misused in Rajarajeshwari Nagar, Gandhi Nagar, and Malleshwaram. The case was then handed over to the BMTF for investigation.

The city has 28 constituencies in all, and following the financial misappropriation, in which the above three constituencies were named, other constituency may now come under the TVC scanner.

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