Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation
Bhubaneswar: The municipal corporation’s plan to build a multi-storeyed office complex at Madhusudan Nagar has hit a hurdle with the office of the accountant general (AG) claiming that the 1.95 acre land had earlier been allotted to them.
Chief minister Naveen Patnaik was supposed to lay the foundation stone for the project on August 31. However, it was cancelled at the eleventh hour following the controversy over land allotment.
Mayor Ananta Narayan Jena said: “It was decided that our building would come up on the Madhusudan Nagar plot. However, since the accountants general office has raised an objection over land allotment, the general administration (GA) department is verifying the claims. We are sure that all hurdles will be cleared and the project will come up there.”
Another senior official of the civic body claimed that as Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation is a state government wing and accountants general is under central government’s control, a claim raised by the latter has to be checked by the general administration department.
As per practice, the general administration department is the custodian of government land within the jurisdiction of the civic body. It is the department that allots land to applicants according to their requirement. “The municipal corporation has all the allotment papers in its name, but unless the controversy is sorted out, the civic body cannot go ahead with the construction of the office building. We have nothing to do in this problem as it is between the AG and the general administration department,’’ he said.
The civic body project officer Srimanta Mishra said: “We were given allotment by the department. When the accountants general is claiming otherwise, we will wait for the final verdict. If the department’s findings is in favour of the accountants general, then we have to look for some other land for our office building.’’
Sources said after the general administration department allotted the land, the civic body officials had sought proposals from empanelled architects to come up with designs for its office building.
It had also applied to the Bhubaneswar Development Authority for a conditional approval to the construction plan. The multi-storey office building was proposed to have eight floors. As per the plan, after the completion of the new building the existing municipal corporation office would become one of the zonal offices.
The civic body is also planning to have at least three such offices in the city for effective decentralisation of administration. There is a plan to invest nearly Rs 50 crore for the new multi-storeyed office building.