The BBMP Commissioner has directed the departments concerned to issue trade licence to a commercial establishment in spite of the High Court restraining BBMP from issuing licences to commercial establishments in residential areas. This has shocked the residents who have been campaigning against the encroachments of such outlets on their premises.
Residents of Koramangala are aghast over the possible contempt of court committed by BBMP Commissioner Lakshminarayana. The issue relates to the decision of BBMP Health Department to grant a trade license to an ‘illegal’ commercial establishment on the specific instructions of the BBMP Commissioner.
The commercial establishment calling itself “Breakfast Club” is situated on 8th Main Road, Jakkasandra Block Koramangala in an area zoned as Residential as per RMP 2015. It may be recalled that the High Court of Karnataka in a Writ Petition 3676/ 2008 filed by Citizens Action Forum and others had restrained BBMP from issuing trade licenses to commercial establishments in residential areas.
Objections of the citizens and Koramangala 3rd Block RWA had been specifically given in writing to the BBMP Health Department. In spite of the objections, the BBMP Commissioner has issued direct instructions to the BBMP Health officers concerned to disregard High Court orders and issue the license to help the establishment. In a page from the file made available to City Kemp the Commissioner has directly initialled a request on 01 Dec 2014 asking the Medical officer and Health Inspector concerned to “help with issue of trade license”.
In subsequent file notings dated 3rd December the Medical Officer and Health Officer have recorded that they are issuing the Trade License only on a direct order from the Commissioner himself.
The promoter of the Breakfast Club is a Limited Liability Partnership firm called Hivemind Cafe and Studios. Partnership documents with City Kemp show the partners as Nishyarth Prasad, Pranav Pai and Anil Shetty.
Pranav Pai is the son of former Infosys veteran TV Mohandas Pai. The prominence of Pai has led to serious questions being raised as to whether Pai intervened with the Commissioner in the matter. Pranav Pai is shown as a partner in profits entitled to 45 % of the resulting profits according to the partnership documents available with City Kemp.
This is a classic case of the fence eating the crop. Lakshminarayana has some very serious questions to answer.
It is learnt that the promoters of the Breakfast Club have got a statua quo order from the city civil court Bengaluru. Citizens have vowed to challenge the stay order in court.