Chandigarh admn admits to losing Rs 11 cr to illegal hoardings

  • Hillary Victor, Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
  • Updated: Jul 15, 2015 17:24 IST

The Chandigarh municipal corporation (MC) has failed to crack a whip against illegal advertisements and hoardings in the city.

Even as it issued more than 1,300 notices to violators who have put up banners and billboards without seeking approval from the competent authority (MC commissioner) last year, it is yet to recover Rs 11 crore as advertisement fee.

In reply to an application filed under the Right to Information (RTI) Act, the civic body admitted that it failed to take action against the violators. Notices were issued to shop owners, industrialists, jewellers, besides others for displaying hoardings, banners illegally under the Advertisement Control Order, 1954, last year.

The violators were given seven days to deposit the ad-vertisement fee failing which the MC was to take legal action.

When contacted, MC commissioner Bhawana Garg said it was a serious issue and action would be initiated against the violators for not depositing the fee.

However, in the absence of checks, illegal billboards and banners continue to dot the city causing huge loss to the civic body.

Nominated councillor Surinder Bahga said as per rules, the civic body should have filed a recovery suit against the violators with the district magistrate and should have attached the properties of the defaulters.

However, the MC officials have chosen to turn a blind eye to the violations, he added.

He said even today, hundreds of illegal hoardings could be spotted in various parts of the city which proves that there is a nexus between the violators and MC officials.

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