Bengaluru – According to recent news by The New Indian Express, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) is planning to take help of the Geographic Information System (GIS) in order to identify and remove illegal hoardings.
The civic agency has so far marked and identified at least 5,700 illegal hoardings in Bengaluru using GIS, these were put up by 2,671 agencies. The use of GIS will help the BBMP to have a check on hoardings and will help to increase revenue generation.
Recently, the High Court took the BBMP to task over its poor performance in the collection of advertisement tax. BBMP Commissioner Manjunath Prasad had given an undertaking before the court that it will remove all illegal hoardings in the city in two months’ time.
The BBMP gathered information from BESCOM about the period of time such illegal hoardings have been getting power connection.
BBMP Commissioner Manjunath Prasad said:
Based on that we issued a demand notice for Rs 323 crore, including Rs 150 crore tax, Rs 150 crore penalty and Rs 23 crore in interest. But the agencies went to the court challenging our decision. Now the court has given a direction to collect Rs 150 crore and half of the penalty and the interest amount put together, which comes to around Rs 90 crore. So, we have to collect around Rs 240 crore.
BBMP Standing Committee Chairman (Taxation and Finance) M K Gunashekar said irrespective of political parties or organizations, unauthorized hoardings will be removed. “It is as per the High Court direction. There is no question of bringing pressure on us. No one is above the law. For the last one year, since the matter was before the court, we did not collect advertisement tax. In the coming days, such hoardings will be removed if they are unauthorized,’’ he said.