Tuesday, June 30, 2009


Yelahanka, where former BBMP commissioner Subramanya stays, has the highest number of parks in the entire city

Yelahanka, the gateway to Bengaluru International Airport, is now a green paradise. No guesses for the hard work as former BBMP commissioner S Subramanya resides in the locality
Former Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) commissioner S Subramanya’s contribution to the IT city is debatable. While a few feel his tenure has witnessed the highest number of infrastructure projects, a few h o w e v e r dismiss the opinion.
N e v e r - t h e l e s s , Yelahanka and adjoining areas have received more than they could during the tenure of Subramanya. With its close proximity to the international airport, the locality - that has largely been occupied by defence establishments and public sector enterprises - is now a green paradise.
Barely a few years after its inclusion into the administrative jurisdiction of Bangalore Mahanagara Palike, the area has been developed with more parks and gardens wherever possible. As a result, you will see nothing but sprawling parks in the entire area, making Yelahanka an area with the maximum number of parks in the city.
Sources said 108 parks, including big and small ones, have been developed across the area. While 50 have already been commissioned and opened, the remaining are being developed on war-footing.
On the other hand, the east zone has eight parks and the west zone 10. Among the erstwhile CMCs, Rajarajeshwari Nagar has one park, Bommanahalli three and Dasarahalli six, all developed by the BBMP. Surprisingly, not a single park has been developed either in the South or in Mahadevapura zone in recent times.
Speaking to Bangalore Mirror, a senior BBMP official said, “We have spent nearly Rs 400 crore for the development of parks in both Yelahanka and Yelahanka New Town. The idea of developing the parks was to recover encroached land from private builders and retain them as fully developed parks.”
Clarifying that no special treatment was accorded to Yelahanka, he said the BBMP could not find much of encroached land in other parts of the city for developing parks.
Unlike the parks located either close to the main roads or some corner, the newly-developed parks in Yelahanka are unique. Irrespective of the size of the land, every inch of available space has been developed into a park. It has been designed in such a way that the back door of every house in the locality opens to a sprawling park interspersed with ornamental plants, aromatic plants and verdant lawns. Speciallydesigned joggers’ tracks have been laid out along the periphery of the parks. “While maximum effort has been made to raise new plants, some decadeold like mango and neem have been retained,” said a gardener at one of the parks.
Though all parks in general have been fenced using iron railings, those in Yelahanka do not have much iron except for the gates as the entire park is covered by sequentially-built houses.
While a few parks have just walkers and joggers’ tracks, a few others have shelters in the form of ancient ‘kuteers’ and children’s play areas. One or two parks have basketball courts with floodlights.
A senior BBMP official, on condition of anonymity, admitted Subramanya took keen interest in the development of 65 parks across Yelahanka and they were developed in a record span of eight months. However, the former commissioner said, “Then chief minister H D Kumaraswamy recognised my work. I was made the BBMP commissioner and sufficient revenue raised for development activities.”
B Chandrappa, one of the contestants in the 2008 Yelahanka Assembly election, said, “If Subramanya has developed parks, then it is good for citizens as parks cannot be used for personal reasons.
“Parks not only promote greenery but also increase the oxygen content. Though Subramanya has developed the parks, he should have given preference to other zones too.”
Chetan Deshpande, a techie with a leading MNC, who resides in Vidyaranyapura said, “I feel residents are lucky if their neighbours are either Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa or the BBMP commissioner.”


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