BENGALURU: The seventh public consultation meet of the Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) got off to a stormy start on Wednesday with participants almost coming to blows in their bid to be among the early birds to voice their opinions on the draft of the Revised Master Plan 2031.
As had been the norm in the previous meetings, Additional Director of BDA’s Town Planning department P N Kumar explained the proposed changes in a detailed presentation during this meet that got under way at Gundanjaneya Swamy Kalyana Mandapam on Kodigehalli Main Road.
Midway through his speech, a few in the audience, mainly farmers, demanded the mike. Even as Kumar stopped his talk abruptly, a serious altercation ensued for some time among two groups as to who should speak first. The cops on duty had to rush and restore calm.
After things settled down, there was barely any discussion on the Master Plan. Participants chose to highlight long-pending issues with the BDA.
Lashing out at the civic agency for not paying compensation to farmers whose lands were acquired for the Peripheral Ring Road project, P Nagaraj, ex-chairman of Kogilu Gram Panchayat, said, “Many of them are today living in abject poverty. Farmers are unable to marry off their daughters as BDA has not given them any money.”
Sharing his personal experience, Nagaraj said that 3.5 acres of his land were taken away by BDA in connection with the notification issued for the PRR project in 2004. “It is 12 years now. I must be given Rs 17.5 crores and I have not got a single rupee so far.”
The leader of the Yelahanka unit of the Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha B G Nanjundappa seconded him and demanded speedy compensation to farmers whose lands were taken away for the PRR project.
However, the No Objection Certificates have not yet been issued to the landowners by the BDA.
Hari Kannaiah, the Secretary of the Coffee Board Layout Resident Welfare Association, called for greenery to be retained in the upcoming plan at all costs.
“In the 2015 plan, areas marked as parks should continue to remain so in the new plan,” he said.
K S Chandrashekhar Azad, the founder trustee of an NGO, lashed out at BDA and BBMP for permitting the Taj-GVK group to construct a five-star hotel near the Gasti Kemparahalli lake.