A silent midnight drama was played out on March 31st. The 2022-23 BBMP budget got uploaded silently on its official website with no budget speech document attached or any opportunity for the media or anyone else to ask questions.
True, the circumstances were somewhat unusual. The BBMP had recently been brought under the Fiscal Responsibility Act, which imposed some basic conditions of fiscal responsibility on the BBMP in its budget making and spending processes.
But a cursory perusal of the budget indicates that it is very much business as usual in the BBMP.
The total budget outlay for the current year is put at Rs 10,480.9 crore, a substantial increase from last year’s total of Rs 9,286 crore.
Two-thirds of the budget, Rs 6,911.5 crore, has been set aside for the Public Works Department (PWD). The second highest allocation (Rs 1,469.4 cr) is towards Solid Waste Management.
As usual, allocations for public health (Rs 286 cr), public education (Rs 113 cr) and social welfare (Rs 374 cr) are much lower. For horticulture and urban forestry combined, the allocation is Rs 210 cr. However, allocations for PWD include some maintenance and development works for these heads.
Read the full budget document here.
Rs 10,484 cr revenue expected from property tax, cesses, grants
According to the budget document, BBMP estimates revenue of Rs 10,484.3 crore this year. With taxes (35%) and state government grants (34%) being the main contributors.
The corporation expects to collect Rs 3,107 crore as property tax this year. The budget also mentions revenue of Rs 1,000 cr from a ‘khata regularisation scheme’, even though the State budget gave no clarity on whether the scheme would be implemented this year.
While the state government grants are shown to cover expenses under several heads, in many cases the budget document does not specify the exact purposes for which these amounts would be used.
Read more: Don’t spend more than you actually earn, new Act teaches BBMP fiscal discipline
Following are some of the major allocations.
Soild Waste Management
The majority of the SWM department’s budget is for continuing the operations of the existing waste management system, and for paying salaries of pourakarmikas. Allocations have been made for setting up scientific landfills as per National Green Tribunal orders.
- Establishment and operation of scientific landfills–Rs 100 cr
- Scientific landfill at balance pits of Mittiganahalli, bund development–Rs 75 cr
- Decentralised composting operations–Rs 35.5 lakh
- Maintenance of e-toilets–2.2 cr
- Maintaining landfills/quarries–Rs 20 cr
- Improvement works for the villages surrounding the landfills–Rs 125 cr
- Allocation to PWD to improve landfills/dumping yards–Rs 87.3 cr
- Capital expenses for SWM under Chief Minister’s Nava Nagarothana Yojane and Shubra Bengaluru Yojane (schemes launched by former CM B S Yediyurappa)–Rs 93 cr
BBMP has allocated only Rs 7.5 cr to procure/upgrade equipment in its existing healthcare facilities. This amount is largely for hospital/office equipment and hearse vans.
Other major heads include:
- Programme expenses (AIDS, stents for heart patients, Indira canteen food supply, etc)–Rs 93.7 cr. Of this, the maximum spending is for Indira canteens, Rs 60 cr
- Medicine supply to hospitals and healthcare centres–Rs 5.75 cr
- Maintenance of hospital equipment–Rs 1.3 cr
- Maintenance of dialysis centres–Rs 3 cr
- Allocation to Public Works Department to maintain buildings of healthcare facilities (PHCs, hospitals, labs, etc)–Rs 9 cr
- Allocation to PWD to construct/upgrade buildings–Rs 11.7 cr, which includes
- Establishing dialysis units at Sarvagnanagar, Pulakeshinagar, Jayanagara, Rajajinagar and Vijayanagar assembly constituencies–Rs 3.9 cr
- Building a referral hospital in ward 165 (Ganesh Mandir ward)–Rs 84.4 lakh
- Improving dialysis centre in ward 68 (Mahalakshmipuram)–Rs 52.4 lakh
- Building a hospital each in ward 38 (HMT ward) and ward 63 (Jayamahal)–Rs 53 lakh and Rs 3.3 cr respectively
While the allocation for Public Education is low, relatively higher allocation (Rs 12.5 cr) has been made this year to the PWD to build/upgrade school and college buildings. In the last two years, the allocation to PWD for this purpose was not more than Rs 40 lakh.
- Allocation to PWD to maintain school and college buildings–Rs 10.6 cr
- Maintenance of TVs, projectors and cameras in schools and colleges–Rs 2 cr
- Introduction of SMART education in BBMP schools and colleges in phased manner–Rs 1 cr
- Computers in schools and colleges–Rs 5 cr
- Lab equipment in schools and colleges–Rs 1 cr
- Mid-day meal–Rs 5 cr
- Note Books, uniforms, school bags and shoes–Rs 16 cr
- Distribution of sports material–Rs 25 lakh
- Training (on English, software, etc) for 2nd PU students–Rs 1.5 cr
When it comes to roads, BBMP has allocated funds mainly for maintenance rather than new construction. The majority of the maintenance funds is towards collector roads and local streets (Rs 968 cr), with only Rs 86.8 cr for arterial/sub-arterial roads. Rs 173 cr has been allocated to maintain all road infrastructure (footpaths, bridges, flyovers, etc), and another Rs 35 cr exclusively for flyover maintenance.
Only Rs 8 cr has been allocated for road construction, which includes:
- For collector and local streets (road works in Sarvagna Nagar and BTM Layout assembly constituencies, widening of roads in new zones, developing 86 major roads)–Rs 7 cr
- Arterial and sub-arterial roads–Rs 4.9 lakh
- Strengthening of flyovers/ROB/RUB–Rs 1 cr
BBMP has also set aside Rs 50 cr to acquire land for road widening.
However, massive allocations have been made for road works from state government funds:
- Asphalting of arterial roads–Rs 17 cr
- Restoration of roads in the 110 villages–Rs 201 cr
- Construction of traffic-free corridor from Okkalipuram to Fountain Circle–Rs 4.2 cr
- Construction of underpass from Magadi road to Basaveshwara Nagar Junction–Rs 4.9 lakh
- Grade separator integrating Chord Road, Vatal Nagaraj Road and Shivanagar 8th Main to Basaveshwaranagar Main Road–Rs 3 cr
- Road development under Mukhyamanthrigala Nava Bengaluru Yojane (scheme launched by H D Kumaraswamy during his tenure as CM)–Rs 3 cr
- Construction of grade separator under Nava Bengaluru Yojane–Rs 10.5 cr
- Road development in the newly added 110 villages–Rs 20 cr under Nava Bengaluru Yojane and Rs 51 cr under CM’s Nava Nagarothana Yojane
- Construction of grade separator under Nava Nagarothana Yojane–Rs 33 cr
- White Topping in selected roads under Nava Nagarothana Yojane–Rs 24 cr
- Road development under Nava Nagarothana Yojane–Rs 605.7 cr
- Development of 14 alternative roads connecting to ITPL under Nava Nagarothana Yojane–Rs 11.3 cr
- ORRCA (Outer Ring Road Companies Association) roads development under Nava Nagarothana Yojane–Rs 109 cr
But the budget does not mention the specific roads/stretches to be developed under these schemes.
Horticulture and urban forestry
- Avenue plantation–Rs 9 cr
- Tree survey and numbering–Rs 1 cr
- Tree canopy management–Rs 10 cr
- Maintenance of parks and gardens–Rs 92.3 cr, which includes
- Rs 45 cr for maintaining parks in east, west and south zones
- Rs 40 cr for maintaining parks in new zones
- Rs 59.6 lakh for maintaining parks in wards 44 (Marappana Palya) and 47 (DJ Halli)
- Rs 18.5 lakh for maintaining facilities in parks in ward 167 (Yediyur)
- 1 cr for maintenance of parks on contract
- Various development works in parks and gardens–Rs 13 cr
- Development of new parks in new zones–Rs 68 lakh
- Landscape development of medians, boulevards, circles, etc–Rs 21 cr
- Allocation to PWD for civil works in parks and gardens–Rs 19 cr, which includes
- Works for developing new parks in new zones–Rs 7.3 cr
- Allocations in ward 4 (Yelahanka Satellite Town), 5 (Jakkur) and 13 (Mallasandra), 18 (RK Temple ward), in Nandini Layout, and for Sanjeevini Vana at Lakshman Rao Boulevard
Read more: A citizen’s wish list on what the BBMP’s budget should focus on this year
The allocation for welfare programmes for disadvantaged groups, such as
- SC/ST individuals (includes housing schemes, programmes for pourakarmikas, etc)–Rs 183.8 cr
- OBC and minority groups–Rs 42.8 cr
- People with disabilities–Rs 37 cr
- Economically Weaker Sections–Rs 34.6 cr
- Women–Rs 12 cr
There are also small allocations for senior citizens, transgender persons and hawkers, along with Rs 15 cr set aside for the maintenance of night shelters.
Additionally, the PWD has been given funds for construction works to benefit disadvantaged groups:
- SC/ST Welfare Fund (for basic infrastructure programmes, slum development works, developmental works in the SC/ST areas in certain wards/constituencies)–Rs 168.7 cr
- OBC/BCM Welfare Fund (for developmental, infrastructural programmes)–Rs 63.4 cr
- Specially-enabled Welfare Fund (to build disabled-friendly infrastructure in public offices, etc)–Rs 36.7 cr
Storm Water drains (SWDs)
- Development of SWDs, especially in outer areas, from BBMP funds–Rs 51.7 lakh
- Development works under CM’s Nava Nagarothana Yojane–Rs 186.7 cr
- Annual maintenance of SWDs–Rs 50.8 cr
- Desilting of drains–Rs 50 lakh
- Annual street light maintenance–Rs 82 cr
- Providing additional street lights–Rs 5 cr
- Upgrading street lighting on major roads–Rs 20.4 lakh
- Providing energy-saving street light system with timer control–Rs 7.3 lakh
- Maintenance of markets–Rs 8.9 cr
- Maintenance of water supply and underground drainage system–Rs 57.5 cr
- Lake maintenance–Rs 28 cr
- Lake development–Rs 12.2 cr
- Developing Bellandur lake as per NGT order–Rs 4 cr
- Rainwater harvesting in BBMP buildings, parks–Rs 2.1 cr
- Public toilets–Rs 1.8 cr
- Special Development Discretionary Grants for development works at the ward level–Rs 341.7 cr
- Playgrounds – Rs 10.5 cr
Additionally, some allocations are made under the CM’s Nava Nagarothana Yojane for social welfare, lake development, building construction, etc. Allocations under different heads are also made under the 14th and 15th CFC (Central Finance Commission) grants.
BBMP must be modernised. It looks like without proper study allocated budget 2022-23. For example public toilet. No sufficient public toilets in City premises. Public services compare to earlier increases like delivery of food, donzo, auto and cab drivers and many more. These service people need public toilets. 1.8 cr allotted is definitely not sufficient.