BC Ganganna Gowda, a mechanical engineer of Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) was shocked when he was served a suspension order just three hours prior to his retirement. The officer is known for cutting down the number of bus breakdown incidences. Sadly, now he is fighting for his rights running from one office to the other to get the clean chit and settle his post-retirement benefits.
Gowda Surprised With ‘Suspension Pending Inquiry’ Order
The 60-year old engineer retired on February 28 as the chief mechanical engineer of BMTC. He served in different state road transport undertakings for around 35 years in Karnataka. Until the “suspension pending inquiry” order, he reportedly had a clean record at work. However, he always had to face the anger of his superiors as Gowda never succumbed to their pressures regarding purchasing electric buses for BMTC.
Gowda rather supported the decision to take them on the lease. Reports also indicate that the former managing director of BMTC V Ponnuraj also was transferred for the same reason.
Least Breakdowns During Gowda’s Period
During the period of Gowda, BMTC faced the least breakdowns ever. Gowda held important positions in various divisions of KSRTC. In 2017, he became the chief mechanical engineer of BMTC. The statistics reveal that the bus breakdowns in BMTC reduced to 52,750 in 2016-17 from 54,095 in 2015-16. Even in 2017-2018, the bus breakdowns were considerably low at 41,581.
And all this even though the BMTC continued to use the old and worn out buses due to the stay of National Green Tribunal (NGT) that stopped the corporation from investing in new diesel buses. Even though Gowda did not make any comment on this suspension, inner sources in the BMTC stated that he indeed received a suspension order on February 28 at 2 pm. The order was issued by the KSRTC Managing Director Shivayogi C Kalasad.
The order alleged that during the tenure of Gowda, the vehicles were intentionally held at the workshops of BMTC which caused the corporation huge revenue loss. The order also states that many vehicles that were repaired earlier were again sent back to workshops. Prior to sending this suspension order, the corporation also forced Gowda to take compulsory leave from January 1 to February 27.
Suspension Order For Administrative Reason Or To Protect Corrupt People?
According to Kalasad, the suspension order has been issued due to administrative reasons and it is not necessary to give a show-cause notice prior to giving a suspension order. Gowda can always challenge the disciplinary committee for the action.
The General Secretary of KSRTC Staff and Workers Federation, H.V. Ananth Subbarao said, “Gowda was one of the few honest officers with a clean track record. The charges against him are flimsy. The message is loud and clear. Those who are not corrupt cannot survive in the corporation. Gowda has played a vital role in reducing the number of breakdowns.”