Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Update on campaign to save Sankey Lake

BCC to Sankey’s rescue after firm strongarms locals
Wednesday July 14 2004 New Indian Express

BANGALORE: Presidents of Malle-swaram and other nearby areas are up in arms against the construction of a residential complex on the periphery of the Sankey tank.

They have launched an agitation under the aegis of the Malleswaram Swabhimana Initiative and Grahak Shakti to save the aquifer.

The citizens groups are demanding that the authorities take stern action against Mantri Builders, who have already erected a delineation wall, and that the construction be stopped forwith.

The builder has proposed to construct five 18-storeyed blocks in the area as part of a housing project.

The Bangalore City Corporation (BCC) had recently rejuvenated the tank at a cost of Rs 3.5 crore.

If the proposed project were to come through, it would lead to severe environmental degradation, protesters said drawing attention to the large number of trees that had been chopped without obtaining permission from authorities for taking up construction work.

The project would deliver a severe blow to the well-being of the tank since rainwater, its only source, would be blocked, residents said.

Contamination that could throw up health hazards was also on their mind.

They also alleged that the developers had started accepting bookings without obtaining permission from the authorities concerned.

The protesters are now planning to launch a signature campaign, including letters to the Chief Minister, Deputy Chief Minister, Governor and also to the President of India, said Somasekhar, managing trustee, Grahak Shakti.

Meanwhile, the BCC is contemplating stern action against the builder for violating norms.

“They will be asked to stop the construction work, which cannot be taken up without obtaining environment clearance from the centre,” a BCC official said.


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