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Mohali advertisement mafia bleeding exchequer

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The Times Of India
22nd November, 2019 10:06 IST

MOHALI: The illegal hoardings put up on uniploes across various highways passing through the city have been causing huge losses to the public exchequer .

The advertisement mafia has taken full advantage of the sites which the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (Gmada) failed to auction under its outdoor advertisement policy.

Tenders for Gmada's outdoor advertisement spaces on unipoles and other spaces on highways and outer roads saw very few takers, due to which the auctioning was called off. But, now all the unipoles located on the same highways and roads are displaying advertisements, which keep changing every week or 10 days.

A senior officer with Gmada requesting anonymity said, "The unipoles situated on the highway from Mohali to Kharar has around 10 unipoles and the one from Mullanpur to Siswan and Kurali has advertisements spaces on streetlight poles, which have not been auctioned by Gmada but they are displaying huge advertisement hoardings without any authorisation from Gmada. All such advertisements are illegal."

When the matter was brought up before Gmada chief administrator Girish Dayalan, he said, "I'll get it checked, and if anything wrong is detected, I'll get those hoardings removed in two days. Action will be taken against erring officials."

The Gmada had last year unleashed an advertisement policy to propel its revenue and invited online bids for leasing out sites for outdoor advertising on major roads under its jurisdiction.

Unfortunately, the authority had failed to attract bidders for many such sites falling on the highways. The reasons stated were high reserve prices of sites and their inappropriate location, said a Gmada officer.

A total of 60 sites were made available for bidding in zones 1-4 and zone-5 comprises 16 sites. All the unipoles were be of uniform size of 20'x10' and monthly reserve price or minimum bidding price of each site had been fixed at Rs 65,000.

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