Monday, June 21, 2010

BBMP, traders lock horns over road widening

BBMP, traders lock horns over road widening
Bangalore, June 20, DHNS

The controversy over the issue of Chamrajpet Road widening continued on Sunday.

The Traders Samiti which called for a bundh on Saturday saw a unilateral response against the road widening project embarked upon by the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP).

While BBMP officials said that the road widening process has already begun and could not be stopped, traders are willing to fight till the project is reversed. “If we keep responding to every protest, there is no way that the City will see any relief from the traffic congestion,” said a BBMP official.

However, the Chamrajpet traders have vehemently opposed the idea of a road widening project. “ With the connecting roads, into and out of Chamrajpet, like Avenue road and Cottonpet road widening projects have been shelved, it seems there is no logic behind this project,” said Dr Satish Bhonsale, one of the traders in the area.

Bhonsale and his fellow traders have taken on a perilous journey towards justice, where they demand that road widening projects which involve huge loss of property must be reconsidered. “We are 10 per cent of owners in the area. The rest are all tenants who have a living to make. There is no solution for them,” he said.

Questions are being raised on the BBMP’s feasibility study over the road widening project, where the end result will not suffice for the growing traffic in the City. Even the compensation provided by the Palike seems to have drawn the wrath of the traders.
“The Transfer of Developmental Rights which is being proposed is just not good enough. Where will we go with a piece of paper when projects such as these take a long time to finish,” Bhonsale asked. Whether the traders will budge if adequate compensation is given, Bhonsale and Sundar Rao, another trader in the vicinity said they will have to discuss the matter in their Samiti. “But even if we agree, where is the money with the BBMP to provide us with such hefty amounts for the property we forego,” asked Bhonsale.

Sunder Rao said that in the next couple of days, a meeting between the local MLA, Councillor and the BBMP officials is likely to take place. “We should have a concrete response to our protests in the next three-four days,” said Rao.

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