Palike engineers find their crore strength

Chief engineers get power to give administrative approvals for work costing up to Rs 1 crore; earlier limit was Rs 10 lakh

Officials who are holding the post of chief engineer across divisions and zones of the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) have a reason to cheer. In an order issued last month, BBMP Commissioner N Manjunath Prasad has delegated some of his powers to the heads of different departments. The order, officials say, is aimed at reducing the time for clearing approvals.

This is one of the major decisions taken by BBMP Commissioner.

As per the latest order, BBMP projects costing more than Rs 10 crore require the administrative approval of the state government. Works that are anywhere between Rs 3 crore and 10 crore can be cleared in the council. The standing committees have been given the power to provide administrative approval for works that fall in the range of Rs 1 crore and Rs 3 crore. BBMP Commissioner can clear projects that do not exceed Rs 1 crore. This also applies to approving tenders.

Chief Engineers have been given powers to give administrative approval and tender approvals for the works that fall between Rs 10 lakh and Rs 1 crore.

This is being done to stop chief engineers from coming to the head office for getting approvals for small projects from different divisions

— N Manjunath Prasad, BBMP Chief

And, the executive engineers can clear works up to Rs 10 lakh. Earlier, the power of giving approvals for the project ranged from Rs 20 lakh to Rs 50 lakh, depending on whether the chief engineer is heading the division or department


The chief engineers also get complete powers to given technical sanction and clear the draft tenders for projects up to Rs 1 crore.

The order, which is uploaded on BBMP’s website, also states that the zonal commissioner, special commissioner (projects) and special commissioner (welfare) should complete the e-procurement process for the projects cleared by the standing committees, council and the state government.

BBMP Commissioner N Manjunath Prasad

BBMP Commissioner Manjunath Prasad, who signed the order, said that the delegation of powers will reduce the number of tables a file needs to go to get approvals. “This is being done to stop chief engineers from coming to the head office for getting approvals for small projects from different divisions,” he said. He also said the chief engineers will be able to take up projects that are announced in the budget.

Some engineers however felt that the delegation of powers to the heads of departments such as lakes, road engineering and stormwater drains is a good move.

Engineers however felt that the chief engineers who work in the zones may come under the pressure of elected representatives to clear projects that are unnecessary.

“Earlier, the chief engineer could easily pass the buck whenever there was a pressure to clear unwanted projects by stating that they do not have financial powers. It won’t happen henceforth,” a BBMP engineer said.

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Sagar Biswas

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