Monday, January 22, 2007

Save Ulsoor Lake Citizens' Movement

Reproduced from an email from Leo Saldanha of the Environment Support Group:


*Ulsoor Lake, Bangalore.*

Date : 12 / 01 / 2007


The Commissioner,

Bangalore Mahanagara Pallike,

Office of the BMP,


Dear Mr. Commissioner,

*Subject: Save Ulsoor Lake: Ban parking inside lake area.*

Yesterday, we were the Ulsoor Lake Citizens Forum, to-day it has evolved
into the Ulsoor Lake Citizens Movement and shortly we foresee it
becoming the *Save Ulsoor* *Lake National Movement,* thanks to the
response we are getting from all parts of the Country.

On behalf of the Citizens of this area, we are serving notice to the
Corporation, recording that a totally illegal scheme is being bulldozed
through, at break-neck speed around the Ulsoor Lake, for a parking lot
within the lake area. This will pollute the area and destroy the lake.
More important, it is being undertaken by some authoritative and
arrogant officials who are in partnership with the businessmen from
Commercial Street, which nexus has been established at the recent
meeting held (refer T V Media and News Paper Reports 10^th and 11^th
January 2007).

The four (4) acres area in question is earmarked for a garden (which
also earlier existed as a rose garden and destroyed during the lake
de-silting operation) and *at no costs will the* *Citizens tolerate the
area being paved and fenced into a parking-lot*. We were sought to be
informed that, this will be a temporary measure till the storm water
drain is covered and a parking-lot is set up over the covered drain.
Every Government employee including your officers must be reminded that
they are, after all public servants and must respect the views and
concerns of genuine Citizens and also remember that their salaries are
paid by the Citizens through the Government. Arrogance and Authority
wielded by them at the meeting was nothing short of the British Raj.


The project “drain covering” is to be completed as per your officials
within 8 months from now. *Firstly,* this itself disqualifies the
Corporation (BMP) from spending several crores on converting the garden
area and making it into a parking-lot for just 8 months. *Secondly,*
Rupees eight crores to be spent on covering the drain, the *third stage*
being, after 8 months spending another several crores to remove the
temporary parking lot after 8 months, which will be total waste
material. And *finally* another several crores will have to be spent to
reconvert the four acres back into a virgin garden. *All this within one
year? *So Mr. Dear Commissioner: several crores + eight crores + several
crores + several crores = a mind boggling total sum of public money
wasted. Any answers please!

*We intend, that the garden area be saved and the garden project*
(envisaged five years back) *be undertaken forth with before some other
corrupt scheme is designed.*

The Citizens of this area have unanimously decided, that if the
Corporation Officials try to use muscle power and force the issue, that
is by not respecting the Citizens sensitivity to protecting the lake
area, then the Citizens will have no other options but to physically
stop the clandestine and illegal destruction of the lake area,
irrespective of what happens. The Citizens will never agree to allow any
vehicles to be parked at the area where the garden was designed. The
Bengaluru Citizens have decided to make this a National Movement if need
be to save the lake, and may this be forerunner to save other lakes.

*This is to call upon you to pass immediate orders for stoppage of the
work as it is a total waste of public funds,* because the Citizens will
never allow the garden area to be made into a parking lot. And even if
necessary by seeking legal action, *apart from the writ petition No:
31343/95 and connected matter 18030/05 pending in the High Court of
Karnataka against the State of Karnataka, with regards the destruction
of all lakes. *After all the petitioners:* 1) Padmashree Jaffar
Futehally, Ornithologist, 2) Sri P.D. Gaonkar, Former Chief Conservator
of Forests, 3) Lt.General Narahari (Retd), Param Vishisht Seva Medal, 4)
Dr.H. Narasimhaiah, Former Vice – Chancellor Bangalore University, *are
no ordinary people and without foresight we are sure that, they would
not have wasted there time in challenging the Governments motives. *We
the Citizens have decided to* *strengthen their arms and take the battle
forward with regards to commercialization of the lake area.*

Your senior Officers had mentioned that this entire exercise at Ulsoor
Lake of temporary parking and shuttle service to Commercial Street* *was
to be an experiment / test case.* At whose cost? *May we in turn,
suggest the contrary?* As a test case, we are interested that the
Officials responsible,* *be held principally liable for the waste of the
public money and the same to be recovered from them.*


Lastly since your Officers are trying to force their illegal scheme
through, it is necessary to record that they are inviting a
confrontation and a show down and it is desirable that they be *ordered
to restrain themselves.*

We are confident that we will get the needed relief and wish not to take
this matter further. But just in case we do need too, we seek to inform
you and petition the Honorable President of India, the Honorable Prime
Minister of India, the Honorable Members of Parliament, the Honorable
Chief Minister of Karnataka, the Honorable Members of State Legislature,
Statesmen, Dignitaries, the Judiciary, Eminent personalities,
Professionals, Students and all others, to join us as ordinary Citizens
of this Country to support this noble cause of ours.

With regards and concern.

For The Citizens

*Patric Anthony Krishna Swamy Prithvi Pani *

Apt 1, Raymond Court, 1/9, Assaye road, 38/13,Meanee Avenue,

#23 MSO Colony, 1^st Cross, Bangalore – 560 042.

Bangalore – 560 033. Bangalore – 560 042. Ph No : 25302222

Ph No : 25482737 Ph No : 25300180 Mob No : 9900247771

Mob No : 9945517147 Mob No : 9880705401

Other Signatories enclosed : 14 column sheets

Copy to :


The Honorable President of India


The Honorable Prime Minister of India


The Honorable Chief Minister of Karnataka


The Honorable Members of Parliament (Bangalore)


The Administrator (Bangalore)


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