BANGALORE: After one year of continuous discussion, the Standing Committee (Market) of Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) including MLA Vijay Kumar along with BDA (Bangalore Development Authority) have decided to build a multi storied mall at Jayanagar by demolishing the present BDA complex. However, Chairman of Standing Committee (Market), Rupa Ramesh assured the shopkeepers that no action will be taken without providing prior notices to them. She said, “It is a long process. So, I urge the shopkeepers and the Merchants’ Association of Jayanagar to cooperate with us. We will act according to the norms of the Karnataka Municipal Act and accordingly three notices under 370 and 470 of the Act will be served, before any action is taken in this regard.”
This project was initiated before the Council about one year back, which was subsequently approved by the BDA, who will be executing the entire project. The mall will have seven floors with basement parking facilities. An amount of `115 crore has been estimated for the same. Rupa Ramesh further informed, “This new mall will accommodate more shops, thus adding to the revenue of the Corporation. Further, it will also add to the beautification of Jayanagar.” She added, “ BDA hasn’t informed us the exact date, when the project will start. But, we will start with demolition of the Puttana theatre first.”
However, the shopkeepers are not quite happy with the initiative, as they fear exorbitant rent will impact their livelihood and will also lead them to lose customers. The general Secretary of Jayanagar Merchants’ Association, Jagadish said, “We welcome developments, if a proper proposal is presented to us. There has been no communication with us, pertaining to the progress of the project.” He added, “We have been carrying our business in this complex for the last 30 years and have established it as one of the most famous shopping complexes in the city. This has been a favourite destination for the middle class in the city. Moreover, we do not earn like the IT employees and we survive on our regular customers. Hence, paying the rent will definitely be a heavy burden.” Ali, a shopkeeper of a cloth store said, “The vegetable market will disappear with the mall. We run a small cloth store and cannot afford this extravagance and nor will our customers. Until now, nothing has been formally communicated to us. However, we have seen the map and they will be conducting a pooja soon.”
On the plight of shopkeepers, MLA Vijay Kumar said, “There is no question of shifting the shopkeepers. The multiplex will be built in two phases. After the completion of one phase, the shopkeepers will be shifted there and later the second phase will begin.” He further added that the project will be completed within 18 months and that Puttanna theatre will be restored back.
We will have to wait and watch when the Jayanagar BDA complex converts into a mall.