Monday, March 29, 2010

‘Why cut trees for a memorial park?’

‘Why cut trees for a memorial park?’
With no clarifications coming forth from either ABide or Flags of Honour as regards the National Military Memorial Park to be built inside the Indira Gandhi Musical Park on Ali Asker Road, residents of the locality continue with their protest
MANASI PARESH KUMAR


Residents in the vicinity of the Indira Gandhi Musical Park on Ali Asker Road have a fundamental question about the proposed National Military Memorial Park to be built inside the only remaining lung space in the area: Why do you have to cut down trees to make a park? More than 30 people who gathered at the spot to continue their protest against the memorial wanted answers that nobody has come forward to give them so far.
“Given that they are planning a 150-foot tall veera gallu, an exhibition hall, replicas of tanks, war ships, fighter jets and even a lake in the six and a half acre plot that has been allotted to them, one can only estimate how many trees will be cut down,” says Abhay Jain, a regular walker at the park.
The residents also say that there is no information about the proposed design of the place. “I have gone to the BDA and checked out the plan. The proposed design certainly requires more space than what 31 eucalyptus trees can offer.
“Yet, Rajeev Chandrashekar, MP, says that no heritage tree will be touched,” said Bhanuprakash, another walker.
With conflicting information coming from various quarters about the project, the residents are a worried lot.
“They did not even involve the residents in the plan. Why mark it as a civic amenities site and then hand over a portion of it to a private trust?
“What about the public to which the park belongs?” asks Dr Sudhir Pai, secretary, Krishna Apartments Residents Association, which has already submitted a memorandum to the CM and the governor.
But what is niggling them the most is the logic behind the venue of the memorial.
“When trees are cut down in Bangalore for road widening, it is painful but inevitable. But, why cut down trees inside a park? When other countries are working towards increasing their green cover, Bangalore seems determined to turn barren. If you want to build a memorial here, don’t cut down a single tree and you have our complete support.
“Otherwise, we are going to continue with our protest,” said Prof Kamala Balekundri, a 78-year-old who has served as a commissioned officer in the National Cadet Corps (NCC).

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