Sunday, March 30, 2008

The road alongside troubled waters

The road alongside troubled waters

January 22, 1996: The then Bangalore Mahanagara Palike partnered with five civic bodies to safeguard Madiwala Lake against any non-forestry activities
March 29, 2008: The BBMP brought three JCBs, uprooted over 40 bamboo clumps planted by the jogging path on Saturday to build a road along the lake.
BBMP commissioner S Subramanya said the civic agency has deposited the necessary money to Lake Development Authority (LDA) to build a 310mx24 m road on the tankbund area of the 114.6-hectares Madiwala Lake (registration No. 275). It’s spread across four villages — Billekanahalli (survey No. 64), Roopena Agrahara (survey No. 11), Madiwala (survey No. 76), Kodi and Chikkanahalli, (survey No. 23).
But the forest department is in no mood to allow the BBMP to construct the road since it has claimed ownership over the lake since 1992. “The lake was with the minor irrigation department’s custody and was handed over to the forest department in 1992 after the Lakshman Rau report was tabled. Though the LDA is a governing body, it has no power to grant any land,’’ said forest officials.
On Friday night, forest department officials asked zonal engineers not to carry out any construction without its permission. But on Saturday, the mud was levelled and bamboo clumps were uprooted. “The bamboo clumps were thrown under the heap of mud. If proved, the case will be booked as per the law,’’ the forest officials added.
Why the road?
Subramanya said the road alongside the lake will ease the traffic congestion at Silk Board junction. Letters written to the LDA revealed the road, if constructed, would improve connectivity between Bilekanahalli and Nayanappa Shetty Palya villages.
The lake was earlier developed by the forest department and land army in 1999-2000, during which the jogging path, bamboo plantation, wetland management plan and channel diversions were created.
Further, Subramanya said: “We have all the necessary permission to make the road. We will approach the principal secretary, who himself gave the green signal to construct the road.’’
“There is no order to construct the road. We found that an apartment has been built even where there is no proper road. Now, the civic body is under pressure to construct the road and it has asked the apartment builder for Rs 10 lakh. The BBMP also said the builder will construct the road,’’ the forest officer added


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