Owing to the long-standing dispute between the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) and organisers of the Mumbai marathon, the civic body has decided to discontinue its practice of beautifying the marathon routes.
Event management firm, Procam, owes the BMC Rs1.8 crore, which the civic body claimed it spent on painting and resurfacing roads and on licence fees for hoardings.
Additional municipal commissioner (city) MM Adtani confirmed that the BMC is not going to beautify the routes for the marathon due to the squabble with organisers. “We will take a deposit of Rs15 lakh from them, charge them for hoardings and for the space they use to erect the stage,” Adtani said.
Sources said Swadheen Kshatriya, who was the municipal commissioner until Monday, felt the BMC should not take up the job this year because the organisers will not pay for expenses it incurs for the event for tasks such as painting of roads and dividers, marking signages and resurfacing the marathon routes.
“The BMC had painted and beautified the road in south Mumbai for US president Barak Obama’s visit in November. So we won’t re-do it,” said a senior civic official, requesting anonymity.
“We haven’t even returned their deposits from last year. We won’t waive off their dues.”
Vivek Singh, joint managing director, Procam could not be reached for a comment.
The issue of non-payment came up in 2008 after the BMC realised the organisers erected tents at Azad Maidan without paying fees for six years. The organisers said they wouldn’t pay because the BMC was doing maintenance work.
The eighth edition of the event is scheduled for January 16.