Monday, September 21, 2009

I will complete my project whatever it takes

I will complete my project whatever it takes

Vested interests have made a lot of people back off from investing in state

Ashok Kheny has been in news for quite some time now. In fact, from the day he went public about his brainchild, the Bangalore-Mysore Infrastructure Corridor (BMIC), not a day passes without the managing director of Nandi Infrastructure Corridor Enterprise (NICE) and his projects being in the eye of one or the other storm. Residents of Pramod Layout and adjacent areas near the link roads being built as part of the BMIC, protested last week against the NICE project, alleging that Kheny was grabbing their lands to build a commercial complex for his personal benefit and it would lead to the demolition of 500 houses. In an interview with Shwetha S, Kheny dismissed all allegations made against him as petty politicking.

What is your take on the allegations made by the residents of Pramod Layout?
There is no truth in the allegations and I totally disagree with them. The fact remains that many of protestors have vested interest and they are not even from the locality. Many were called from Nelamangala to join the protest and there were also people who came from places as far as 40 to 50 km from the project site.

Why do you think they joined the protest?
This is a political game and some people are just trying to defame me and make sure that my project doesn't see the light of the day. In fact, the very day the protests were held, I received calls from the actual residents of the locality who assured me that they were in no way associated with the protests and had no objection to the NICE project.

You have also been accused of acquiring government land, including lakes, without its permission to construct roads. Your comments.
No. It is not true. I have documents to show that the government itself has given me land on a lease basis to restore the Somapura lake. From the time we have taken the lake on a lease basis, we have been cleaning and maintaining it. The government was apprehensive about the lake being left like that; they thought some builders or agencies might acquire it or would turn it to some sort of sewage dump. But we have been trying to restore the lake with the government's permission.

You have been facing some hindrance or the other, since the time you started with the project. How do you see it?
This is the reason why not many people are keen to invest in infrastructure projects in Karnataka. There is too much of political interference. Vested interests or certain segments make it difficult for developers to carry on with their projects. Due to this, a lot of companies have backed off from investing in infrastructure projects in the state. But I will not step back. No matter what hardships come my way, I will see to it that I complete the project successfully.


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