Monday, November 24, 2008

Albert Road footpath taken over by house owners

Albert Road footpath taken over by house owners
By S Lalitha,DH News Service,Bangalore:
Shocking indeed are the ingenuous strategies adopted by the residents of Albert Street to encroach upon the footpath outside their houses.

This L-shaped road, running to 400 metres, serves as a link between the busy Brigade Road and Richmond Road.
These are some of the sights that can be discerned on one side of the footpath, which is the designated `Parking’ space here.
Many plants are being grown outside houses with fencing provided around them to ensure that they do not get uprooted by anyone, the path is dotted with long slabs to prevent walking here, a couple of houses have even placed huge stones outside their gates to block pedestrians from venturing near the spot outside their gates while a few houses have created an elevated path leading to their gates right from the footpath.
The end result is that pedestrians end up walking on the road, jostling for space between the numerous vehicles that zoom past.
The truth behind this remark of Rakesh (name changed), a houseowner, hits you really hard: “This is no longer a City for pedestrians and senior citizens. My street alone is a splendid example of that.”
One also feels outraged to witness students of the nearby St Euphrasias Girls High School walking on the busy road, endangering their lives and limbs. Equally disgusting is the fact that those who spoke to this reporter reiterated that their names not be mentioned as “the houseowners carrying out encroachment work belonged to the ultra-rich segment of society and it does not pay to take on them.”
One resident said, “I suffer on a daily basis but I do not want to antagonise my neighbours as I have to deal with them on a daily basis. It would be a real relief if the law takes its course instead of us squabbling with each other.”
Another problem encountered is that visitors to Richmond or Brigade Road casually park their vehicles on the `Parking side’ and when this becomes full, vehicles are illegally parked on the other side, making movement on this road a miserable experience both for vehicle users and pedestrians, points out another resident.
Mercifully, the stretch of footpath on the same street that leads to Brigade Road is in a usable condition and this stretch is usable.
Circle Inspector (Traffic) of Ashok Nagar Geetha Kulkarni said the matter would be investigated into and action would definitely be initiated against the offenders.

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