(This story initially appeared in on Jul 19, 2020)BENGALURU: From being a job mannequin in Covid-19 administration to a dreaded metropolis the place sufferers are desperately ready for ambulances and hospital beds, Bengaluru has been caught flat-footed attributable to lack of coordination amongst authorities businesses and ministers.
The state authorities on Saturday changed BBMP commissioner BH Anil Kumar together with his predecessor N Manjunath Prasad in a bid to repair the mess. STOI examines the principle causes behind the faltering outbreak response.
Killer complacency: At a time when Covid instances had been spiking in different cities, Bengaluru had solely 1,700 instances by June 25, however in mid-July, it’s all set to the touch the 30,000 mark. The civic company didn’t study classes from different cities however grew to become complacent. The lockdowns weren’t used successfully to ramp up well being infrastructure and allied logistics.
Tech strategy: Whereas the preliminary battle was fought and received by deploying males on the bottom who recognized potential carriers and traced their main and secondary contacts, in current instances, BBMP brass spent extra time within the warfare room discussing knowledge and turning a deaf ear to frontline well being personnel. Floor workers had been fatigued and never a lot was accomplished to inspire them.
Lack of coordination: There was full disconnect between BBMP and different authorities businesses on Covid containment. Whereas the rift between BBMP commissioner and mayor was an open secret, the shadow-boxing between the commissioner and chief secretary made issues worse. Additional, the BBMP was not feeding realtime knowledge and particulars in actual time to the warfare room and containment methods received derailed.
Procurement fiasco: Whereas many corporators and a few metropolis ministers discovered it troublesome to function given the commissioner’s proximity to high political bosses, what backfired was the commissioner’s transfer to pay a day by day rental of Rs 800 per mattress to personal suppliers who got orders to supply infrastructure for the 10,100-bed Covid Care Centre (CCC) on the Bangalore Worldwide Exhibition Centre. The federal government feared the problem would snowball right into a Rs 200-crore rip-off and singe politicians. Although chief minister Yediyurappa averted some embarrassment, he was visibly indignant with the commissioner.
Not in sync: Whereas the federal government was towards any extension of lockdown because it was taking a toll on the financial system, the commissioner echoed specialists on extending the lockdown for one more week. Sources mentioned the chief minister was reportedly livid at this strategy.
Complaints from MLAs: There have been a number of complaints from metropolis MLAs stating that the commissioner was not clearing their recordsdata. Some big-ticket tasks such because the high-density hall and difficulty of TDRs weren’t being accomplished as netas and vested curiosity teams needed it. A senior minister felt his clout in BBMP was diminishing because the commissioner was not heeding his directions.