The Bangalore Political Action Committee (BPAC) has called on the ruling Congress party in Karnataka to honour its electoral promise made ahead of the Lok Sabha polls of granting more powers to mayors and chairpersons of municipal corporations.
BPAC has written to Chief Minister Siddaramaiah inviting his attention to para 13 of the Congress manifesto where the party made a commitment to ensure that mayors and municipal chairpersons “can operate as Chief Executive Officers of cities with executive powers and responsibilities and not just ceremonial positions”.
In a letter which also draws attention to the Congress promise of increasing the tenure of mayors, BPAC has said “the needs of a rapidly growing metropolis like Bangalore are different from other parts of the state and that the city requires dedicated attention for development”.
“To enable good governance and administration of the city, the adoption of the Mayoral System of Governance where the mayor is directly elected by the people for a term of five years and is responsible for administration and governance of the Bangalore Metropolitan Region is an important and crying need of the city,” the BPAC has said in its communication.
“Establishing a meaningful term of office for the mayor of the city, the corporation commissioner and key civic officials is urgent and important, so that they have adequate time to develop a vision for the city and implement it,’’ it stated. “This is the right time for the chief minister to bring about the required changes to the law to increase the term of the mayor to a meaningful one and appoint members to the notified Metropolitan Planning Committee,” BPAC president and entrepreneur Kiran Mazumdar Shaw.
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“BPAC is very enthused by the commitment of the Indian National Congress in its manifesto for the Lok Sabha 2014,” BPAC vice president T V Mohandas Pai said.
“Fulfilling the commitment made in the manifesto will ensure that Bangalore gets a new governance architecture to accelerate growth, meet aspirations and help Karnataka reach higher levels of growth and development than in the past,” the BPAC said in an official note. BPAC, a citizen’s group, was set up last year by Shaw, Pai and others to help improve public participation in politics.