MAYOR-IN-COUNCIL (MiC) in charge of revenue department Shankar Yadav has ordered removal of advertisements from foot overbridges at MG Road, declaring them to be a violation of contractual terms.
He also directed officials to recover money earned through advertisements by the contractor and deposit the sum in the Indore Municipal Corporation (IMC) account.
The move rings the bell for the latest round of shadow-boxing between rival BJP factions headed by Public Works Minister Kailash Vijayvargiya and Indore MP Sumitra Mahajan.
Yadav is a Vijayvargiya supporter while fellow MiC member Lalit Porwal, who allegedly made a bundle from the contract, is a supporter of Mayor Uma Shashi Sharma and, by extension, Sumitra Mahajan.
In a recent missive, Yadav instructed IMC Market Officer R K Dhiman to remove ads posted on either side of foot overbridges near 56 Dukaan and the Commissioner’s office, both on MG Road, pointing out that this was not allowed under the agreement between the contractor, M/s Rajdeep Infrastructure, and the Corporation. Copies of the letter were forwarded to Mayor Uma Shashi Sharma and Municipal Commissioner Vinod Sharma.
“Placing ads on the overbridges is a blatant violation of contractual terms. Rajdeep Infrastructure has earned crores of rupees through ad revenues since the contract was signed two years ago.
So I’ve asked the market department to remove the ads and recover the money from the contractor,” Yadav told Hindustan Times. The MiC member threatened to take up the matter in the State Assembly through Commerce Minister Babulal Gaur if the desired action didn’t take place within a week.
It may be recalled that the IMC signed a concession agreement with M/s Rajdeep Infrastructure on April 7, 2004, for constructing three foot overbridges, 79 gantries and erecting 500 road signage on build-operate-transfer basis. As per the agreement, the properties would revert to the Corporation after 18 years and six months during which the contractor would pay Rs 2.16 crore in annual instalments during the concession period.