Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) employees areworking round the clock to clear the city of illegal hoardings and banners, are holding their breath. Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan celebrates his birthday today and they are hoping that the CM’s supporters do not deface the city with banners wishing their leader a happy birthday.
A senior official who spoke to SMD on condition of anonymity, said, I hope party leaders have old workers to not put up banners and hoardings and spoil the look of the city. The CM has appealed.”
In any case the BMC will henceforth will make sure that an FIR is filed as soon as an illegal hoarding or banner is spotted or reported and the culprits prosecuted irrespective of their political affiliation or personal clout. Tired of merely appealing to political leaders and parties not to put up illegal banners, it is now altering the ‘banner policy’ of 2007.
Henceforth an FIR will be registered once an illegal banner has been identified by BMC officials. MiD DAY has reported how the administration has so far removed over 5000 banners but no fines have been collected from anyone. Not a single FIR had been filed against any person for the over 85000 banners that were deemed illegal in 2012.
Now it seems BMC authorities are determined to make the city banner free by incorporating new ways of removing the offending banners and hoardings. Speaking to SMD, Rajendra Bhosale, Deputy Municipal Commissioner (Special), said, “We are creating a new draft policy.
While I cannot reveal much now, I can tell you that we will register complaints against people found guilty of putting up banners. We are very serious about this and will lodge FIRs under the Prevention of Defacement of Property Act 1995 irrespective of which political party’s or which religious banner it is.”
Banish the banner
last month the Municipal Commissioner in his budget speech had brought up the need to control the mushrooming growth of illegal hoardings and banners in almost every nook and corner of the city. Earlier in March, the Bombay High Court had directed the BMC to make the city banner-free in 24 hours.
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