Mysore, June 4 (RK&DM) Harsha Gupta assumed charge as the Deputy Commissioner of Mysore District at the DC's office at 10.45 am today from the present incumbent P. Manivannan, who has been transferred.

The ceremony was followed by both of them addressing a joint press conference.

Manivannan, who spoke first, thanked the people of the city for their encouragement and said he was gratified by the co-operation given by people's representatives and the district administration staff and others in his tenure of two years and four months.

Manivannan said he felt satisfied by the work that had been done so far in the district. Commenting on the fact that in his tenure he had seen the city's population grow to 12 lakhs, he said the land value too had gone soaring. This had led to the inevitable legal disputes that he had resolved to a great extent, all within the ambit of the law.

Commenting on JNNURM project, Manivannan admitted there had been delays in the execution of different projects which was being done at a cost of Rs. 1,600 crore and this was due to shortage of staff. Any project like JNNURM needed adequate staff for completion before scheduled dates, he added.

Manivannan also made a reference to the two Dasaras that he had overseen and mentioned that he had sought permission from the govt. for setting up a permanent Dasara Authority.

DC-level officer

Referring to the contentious issue of tribal rights etc., Manivannan said that in his opinion there should be another DC-level officer so that work could be delegated and distributed. He said he had made a proposal in this regard to the government.

Referring to demolitions undertaken, Manivannan said that he used to be referred to as "demolition man" and added that during his stint in Hubli-Dharwad, he had undertaken many demolition drives to clear encroachments. The first phase of demolitions had been done and he hoped that the second phase, which would be done by the new DC, would have the support of the public and staff. Harsha Gupta, the new DC, also spoke and said there was nothing to read between the lines in the delay in his assuming charge as it was 'only a delayed clearance' by the State Election Commission, given the Graduates and Teachers Constituency as well as Legislative Council polls.

He said he had a briefing and debriefing session with Manivannan on issues that needed to be addressed on a priority basis.

Gupta said as he worked in other districts like Chamarajanagar and Bidar, and that each district had its own uniqueness just as Mysore too had its own special stamp, he would abide by fostering this uniqueness of the city. Additional DC Dr. C.G Betsurmath was also present at the press meet.

Earlier, before taking charge, the new DC offered prayers at Chamundeswari temple atop Chamundi Hill early this morning.

Give more powers to DC: Manivannan

Manivannan, while addressing the joint press meet, said even though the Mysore DC is also the MUDA Chairman, his powers regarding implementation of projects are titular like that of a Governor of a State. He can only make recommendations but the decision to initiate action lies with the legislature which then instructs the executive to act.

He said it was his opinion that administrative powers over MUDA needed to be functional so that development activity could be taken up without the necessity of seeking legislative and executive concurrence. This would speed up work and reduce administrative bottlenecks.

He said that a proposal was before the government to augment the powers of the Urban Development Authorities.

Courtesy : Star Of Mysore