BMC ban on political banners in new policy

15C136838Mumbai: The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation has finalized a new hoarding policy for the city, which bans posters such as birthday wishes for politicians and greetings on religious festivals that have defaced Mumbai in the past. Exceptions, as per the new policy, will be made for political events and rallies, albeit with restrictions – the hoardings will be permitted for a day before and a day after the occasion, and that too only at the venue. The Bombay High Court had, six months ago, asked BMC to keep the city hoarding-free and had directed the civic administration to frame a proper policy that would restrict all types of hoardings. Followed this, the BMC have announced the new amended policy.

It had virtually become a custom for political activists to display loyalty towards their leaders by putting up huge hoardings across the city greeting them on their birthdays and other occasions. But the amended poster policy will put an end to this. Hoardings wishing leaders on their appointments to posts will also not be allowed. Political hoardings, however, will be permitted in the event of rallies and seminars organized in the city. But these hoardings too will be allowed only in the area where the event is taking place, depending on availability of space near the venue. The same rules are applicable for religious functions and festivals. Political parties have been barred from wishing citizens on the occasions of festivals, and religious institutions and social organizations will not be allowed to display any hoardings of their functions, except at the venues.

The new BMC policy also limits the size of permissible hoardings, which should be restricted to 10×10 feet. Furthermore, while granting permission for any hoardings, the political parties or religious organizations concerned will have to make a security deposit amounting to three times that of the regular charge. The fee for a10x10 hoarding is Rs 1,200 per day. In addition to these conditions, hoardings at the venue of events will be permitted for a day before the function and a day after the function. If the organizer fails to remove the hoarding after that, BMC will forfeit the security deposit. Advertisements that promote garba programmers will not be granted permission. We have made certain amendments to the earlier policy and have now banned political parties from putting up hoardings at random and on all occasions,” Mayor Sunil Prabhu told Mirror.”Such hoardings used to deface the city.”BJP leader and Mumbai party president Ashish Shelar approved of the civic body’s new policy. “The BMC has made a good decision, but the administration will have to adhere to it very strictly,” he said.

Bureau Report

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