Saturday, July 03, 2010

War memorial: many questions, any answers?

War memorial: many questions, any answers?

Bangalore: A day has passed since the chief minister announced that the proposed war memorial would be shifted, but very little is known about the future of the National Military Memorial Project.
What’s clear is that the Rs 15-crore project was on the Indira Gandhi Musical Fountain Park premises on
Raj Bhavan Road. However, many questions remain unanswered. What is the alternate location? Who will be deciding on it? And, more importantly, what happens to the work already done?
BDA officials say: “It’s not our job. We are just the implementing authority for the project. For now, work has stopped and we are yet to hear from the government on what’s next.’’
Even members of the National Military Memorial Committee that was formed only for this project, are clueless about the next step. “We have no instructions, nothing to say and nothing to do at all. We feel insulted. That was the best place selected by the committee after close examination of six other locations. Playing politics on our war heroes and martyrs is humiliating. We have already wasted enough time and have no inclination to go for an alternate location. We can only request the government to reconsider.’’ committee spokesperson Major General (retd) M C Nanjappa told TOI.
Sources in the CM’s office maintain that the next course of action is yet to be decided. “Choosing an alternate site for the project will take time. There was a suggestion in the council to have it on the Roerich Estate premises. But that is a private property. In all probabilities, it will be within city limits and at a place accessible to most,’’ they said. However, they were not clear which agency has been entrusted with the job of hunting the alternate location.
JANATASPEAK Was govt sleeping for so long?
The issue has been debated in regional, national and even international media. Several civic groups and eminent personalities have expressed views on the location. Resident welfare associations even filed PILs, spending their hard-earned money. The BDA hurriedly started construction and spent huge amounts of taxpayer’s money. One fails to understand: a) What was Yeddyurappa doing when the above incidents were taking place? b) What compelled him to take a unilateral and sudden decision? He could have called for a meeting of both groups and settled the matter. Now, suddenly cancelling the work reminds one of Muhammad bin Tughlaq, who shifted his capital on an impulse. It is still not known when and where the proposed war memorial will come up. These is being insensitive to the brave soldiers, who lost their lives protecting us — N Mukund | CITIZEN’S ACTION FORUM (CAF), JAYANAGAR


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