Contractor found dead at indoor stadium

V. Krishnam Raju (60), a resident of Kodandaramapura, was found dead in a room at Rajkumar Indoor Stadium in Mahalakshmi Layout on Thursday morning.

It has been alleged that the Class 1 contractor with the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) ended his life. The Mahalakshmi Layout police, who have registered a case, said no suicide note was found. โ€œWe are still probing to ascertain the reason behind his extreme step,โ€ the police said.

Family members said the deceased had yet to get payments from the BBMP with bills amounting to nearly โ‚น5 crore, and also had many outstanding loans. K.T. Manjunath, president of the BBMP Karyanirata Guttigedarara Sangha, said Krishnam Raju had been a contractor executing many projects for the civic body for the past 40-odd years, and had constructed several buildings for the BBMP in Rajajinagar, Malleswaram and Govindarajanagar.

He alleged that many contractors in the city were under financial distress owing to the BBMP not clearing their dues. Since October 2018, the BBMP had not cleared any of the contractorsโ€™ bills, he said and added that dues amounted to a whopping Rs. 2,800 crore.

โ€œIn October last, we had threatened to stop all ongoing civil works across the city. Then, BBMP Commissioner N. Manjunath Prasad had assured us of clearing the bills soon in a phased manner,โ€ he said and charged that the civic body had only been making empty assurances to the contractors. โ€œWe are still waiting for our bills to be cleared,โ€ he said.

Mr. Manjunath said his association had been in touch with Mr. Prasad, who is under home quarantine after having contracted COVID-19. โ€œHe has assured us of meeting with a few representatives once he resumes work,โ€ he said.

(Those in distress or those having suicidal tendencies can call Arogya Sahayavani – 104 for help)

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