MORE THAN 250 illegal hoardings were allegedly put up on the roofs of buildings after November 2004, when the Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC) banned the roof-mounted hoardings. They were put up without any technical approval. Moreover, the hoardings were installed on the national highways passing from Bhopal without CPWD’s no-objection certificate.
After the incident when a hoarding fell, killing a person at 10 No Market, the BMC administration had banned all fresh permissions for rooftop hoardings. However, it is alleged that the installation of such hoardings continued even after this ban.
BMC chairman Ramdayal Prajapati also wrote a letter to the BMC administration in this regard and said that the rules were not being followed in case of installation. He asked why the hoardings were permitted without technical approval.
Prajapati also said that the strength of the building concerned should also be checked before installing hoardings or communication towers. He said that the High Court directives in this regard should be followed within the given time limit. Prajapati said that the BMC has not been removing hoardings from top of the buildings. Instead, it has been removing hoardings from roads, he added.
According to BMC officials, the technical approval should be taken from the BMC city planner or the BMC city engineer. The BMC city planner issues technical permission for hoardings on buildings. For hoardings on roads, the city engineer issues technical approval.
It is estimated that over 500 hoardings could be removed during next fortnight in order to follow the High Court’s directives. On the other hand, permission for all hoardings is expiring after three months. Therefore, it is unlikely that the BMC administration would renew any permission for hoardings.
However, the BMC authorities are still facing political pressure for not taking action against the advertising companies involved in installing hoardings. BMC Commissioner Manish Singh said that a survey to identify the dangerous roof-mounted hoardings has been started. It could take a week’s time to complete, he added.