BENGALURU: Site owners who have built houses in Bangalore Development Authority’s Arkavathy Layout are finally set to get power supply 12 years after their property allotment. BESCOM, BDA and a private firm are now working in tandem to ensure this happens soon. In a recent meeting with civic utility agencies, Chief Secretary T M Vijay Bhaskar urged them to ensure that families residing in the layout be provided relief at the earliest by drawing power from a BESCOM line in the vicinity.
The 600-acre layout spreads across 16 villages between Ballari Road and Old Madras Road with large portions stuck in litigation. Of the 5,000 sites allotted in this layout, only 15 per cent owners have built their houses here. This is due to the absence of basic infrastructure such as water and electricity. Most of the houses came up between three and five years ago and they rely on a temporary power connection for which they pay BESCOM three times the regular charges.
After global tenders were called, Tamil Nadu-based firm Ramalingam Constructions Company Ltd was awarded the contract in May 2018 with an 18-month deadline to set up a 66/11 KV sub-station, transformers, cables and other infrastructure. Now, they have been forced to fast track a bit of their work.
RCCL Project Manager P Shivakumar told The New Indian Express, “We are working on providing power supply immediately. The processing of forms with BESCOM and BDA are underway. Within a month, all the existing houses will be provided with normal power supply by tapping a nearby line. By November 2019, the entire layout will have regular power connection.”
BDA Commissioner Rakesh Singh confirmed that power connection will be in place at all the houses shortly. BESCOM Managing Director C Shikha said, “We are ready to provide power supply as soon as BDA puts in place the needed infrastructure.”
Singh added, “BDA has laid 46 stretches of roads in land not under litigation. Nearly 65 per cent of the road infrastructure is getting completed. Water connection, though, will take some time.”BDA’s poor finances were stated as the reason for the delay in laying infrastructure.
Many allottees expressed their anguish over the sums ranging between Rs 700 and Rs 1,400 they spent each week for water tankers as the borewells have dried up. The absence of streetlights and power bills costing Rs 2,000 a month for a household is wrecking their finances too, they added.