Friday, August 28, 2009

BBMP chief to cough up fine

BBMP chief to cough up fine
Consumer Court Pulls Up Urban Body For Poor Service

Bangalore: K Lakshman’s site in Girinagar measures 1,350 sqft. But when he applied for a khata extract of his property, the document given to him had actually shrunk the site by 150 sqft!
The BBMP’s khata extract was erroneous — it cited the site dimension as 1,200 sqft. Lakshman informed the revenue officer that the dimension mentioned in the extract was wrong and wanted it rectified. But the revenue official wouldn’t listen — he was probably expecting “something’’ to rectify his own mistake. Lakshman, who was not ready to shell out a bribe, applied again for a khata extract, and paid the fee. This time, the document gave the right measurement — 1,350 sqft.
Lakshman did not leave it at this. He approached the consumer court which pulled up the BBMP, and directed its commissioner to pay a fine of Rs 8,500 and subsequently recover it from the salary of the revenue officer concerned.
“The complainant has stated that he approached the officials for rectification of the measurement in the khata extract, which they did not oblige. The officer behaved arrogantly and even demanded a bribe, which prompted Lakshman to apply for the khata extract a second time, by paying a separate fee. We, therefore, find that the BBMP has caused deficiency in their service and their act has caused financial loss and mental agony which needs to be redressed,’’ the court observed.
The court’s move to penalize BBMP is to “keep this type of callousness of the public authorities and corporation under check’’.
Bangalore IV additional district consumer disputes redressal forum, on August 19 has ordered: “The BBMP commissioner is directed to pay Rs 3,500 to the complainant as total damages for hardship, financial loss and mental agony he underwent. It should be paid within 60 days from the date of this order, failing which an interest at the rate of 10% on the amount will have to be paid. The commissioner shall also remit Rs 5,000 as punitive damages to the legal aid account of this forum within 60 days. After paying the above amounts, the commissioner shall fix the liability on the official concerned in issuing such erroneous khata extract and recover the same from his salary.’’


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