‘Procedural hiccups caused delays’
Jyotsna Jalali CHANDIGARH: While outgoing Chandigarh deputy commissioner Brijendra Singh terms his tenure as satisfying, he does not have much to write home about.
Though his tenure ends in September, he will be repatriating to Haryana, his parent state, on August 15. He had approached the UT administration for repatriation to his parent state last year, citing personal reasons. His request was accepted, but he still had to continue owing to the delay in appointing a new DC.
No issue of public interest has been resolved during Brijendra’s tenure, but he blames it on the hierarchical set-up.
Among the major issues before the DC office was the mushrooming of paying guest (PG) accommodations in the city. But it took the DC his entire tenure to decide on rules and regulations for setting up PG accommodations.
No steps have been taken to curtail violation of building bylaws by owners of residential as well as commercial properties. The proposed changes in building bylaws have also not materialised. Curiously, the DC had proposed to lower the misuse charges from Rs 500 per sq ft to Rs 100 per sq ft. Not impressed, the administration asked him to give reason for his proposal. His explanation is still awaited.
Clearly, Brijendra has not done anything beyond paperwork, and the new DC will have to literally start from scratch.
Here is what he has to say about his “achievements” and the “stumbling blocks”: HT: Did you seek repatriation twice? What made you do that? Brijendra Singh: I had asked for repatriation just once because of personal reasons. How do you describe your tenure in the city? What were the major issues you worked upon?
It is a very small city and all UT functionaries
sit at one place. Overlapping of departments and jurisdiction is
bound to happen
My tenure was quiet satisfying and it was a great working experience. We managed to start the digitisation of records in the estate office. The implementation of high-security number plates and the change in the excise policy of liquor are two issues that have been handled really well. The high-security number plate project did not really get going. In fact, didn’t it get stuck in delays?
The delay in such big projects is inevitable. We have now crossed all the hurdles and reached the stage of implementation. No public issues got resolved in your tenure. Do you blame it on less authority and more responsibility?
Geographically, Chandigarh is a very small city and all the functionaries of the administration sit at one place. Overlapping of departments and jurisdiction is bound to happen. I had several departments to look after and, yes, there are times when a decision on some matter gets delayed because of various procedural hiccups. Why has no action been taken in the booth allotment scam even two years after it surfaced?
It is a complicated issue. We are thoroughly examining the inquiry report prepared by a former ADC. I want to resolve the matter before I quit office.