Thursday, November 24, 2005

Fictitious cargo road sends land prices skyrocketing

Fictitious cargo road sends land prices skyrocketing
The Times of India

Bangalore: A fictitious ‘cargo road’ of the upcoming Bangalore international airport near Devanahalli has been used to hike up the already-high land rates in that area to over six times its actual value.

Speculators and customers, who are snapping up any available land around the under-construction airport, are being shown a road by land developers that the Karnataka Road Development Corporation Limited (KRDCL) has built as a North-South link for villages around the airport area. The customers are being told: “This is the road on which all cargo vehicles will go to the airport. It will link to the cargo entrance at the eastern wall of the airport.’’

Result: Land behind the airport area, which should have sold for a maximum of Rs 10 lakh an acre, is selling for nearly Rs 60 lakh an acre!

“Speculators are pouncing on any property along this so-called airport cargo road, because they expect it to appreciate over 100 per cent. In real estate, any property that is near a road automatically appreciates more and these people are expecting crazy returns like the NH that leads to Devanahalli, where property is selling for nearly Rs 2 crore an acre,’’ developer Girish Puravankara told The Times of India.

The cargo road trick, which has been in operation for the last few weeks, came to light after some customers asked Bangalore International Airport Limited (BIAL) authorities for details of the road. The shocked officials explained: “There is no such cargo road behind the airport area. There is only one entrance to the international airport — for both passengers and cargo — via the trumpet interchange from NH7. Only inside the compound are the passengers and cargo split into two routes.’’

Puravankara said reputed builders who are putting up various projects in the area are aware of such scams, as they would have checked maps, guidelines and details before selling or buying land. “But Devanahalli has become the fastest growing real estate market around Bangalore and prices have gone up four fold just this year. Naturally, speculators are making a beeline there,’’ he pointed out.

Still, such scams may end soon. In an effort to protect land buyers, the Bangalore International Airport Area Planning Authority (BIAAPA) is posting the area’s outline development map, on a website by month-end. “The people can just consult this website before buying land in the Devanahalli area. They will know know details like zoning regulations and buy in the correct areas,’’ BIAAPA chairman Sudhir Krishna said.


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