Tuesday, August 25, 2009

BMRDA revives township plan

BMRDA revives township plan

Chief minister gives go-ahead for again inviting global tenders for Bidadi project shelved in 2007; state plans to speed up land acquisition by increasing compensation and providing alternative jobs for affected farmers. Bosky Khanna reports

Bosky Khanna

THE Bangalore Metropolitan Region Development Authority (BMRDA) is planning to revive the shelved Bidadi township project, which is aimed at reducing congestion in the city. It proposes to again invite global tenders for the township.
The project was shelved after the company that was awarded the bid for the township in 2007 pulled out citing delays in land acquisition by the government.
The proposal to re-tender the project has got the green signal from Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa, sources in the BMRDA said. But the cabinet is yet to approve the proposal, they said.
The government is also planning to increase the compensation for farmers who will lose land for the project and also to provide them alternative means of livelihood. This will help the government overcome hurdles in land acquisition, the sources said.
Farmers from whom land was already acquired and who were assured employment and home were often inquiring about the status of the township and the benefits promised to them, the sources said.
Some of them were also demanding more money as realty prices had increased since the land acquisition, they said.
The BMRDA has planned the Bidadi township on 9,178.29 acres of land, spread across 10 villages — Byramangala, Bannigiri, Hosur, KG Gollarapalya, Kanchugaranahalli, Aralasandra, Kempaiyyanapalya, Kanchugarahalli Kaval, Mandlahalli and Vedarahalli. The BMRDA had earlier awarded the project to realty major DLF in October 2007, after a two-stage global bidding process. There were 24 applicants in the first stage, but DLF was the only bidder in the second stage. DLF had made a commercial offer of Rs57.50 lakh per acre. While awarding the bid, the government had claimed that the company had also agreed to meet the cost on land acquisition and also on the rehabilitation and resettlement of those affected by the project.
However, the Delhi-based firm later backed out of the project due to alleged delays in land acquisition by the government. The government had later returned Rs400 crore to the company.
BMRDA sources said the chief minister had also given his nod for the Solur township in the Magadi taluk. The BMRDA had identified 12,525 acres of land, spread across 20 villages — Lakkenahalli, Beeravara, Koramangala, Parvathanapalya, Kannasandra, Hosahalli, Marikuppe, Gudemaranahalli, Kudulur, Chikkasolur, Solur, Thubarapalya, Kalyanapura, Somadevanahalli, Thattekere, Goruru, Lingenahalli, Ramonahalli, Uddandahalli and Byadaranahalli — for the township, they said. Tenders for the township are yet to be invited.
In 2007, when it was decided to develop the Bidadi township, the government had announced different compensation packages for agricultural land depending on proximity to highways, gramathana, village roads and access roads.


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