BENGALURU: Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Monday said the government would show no mercy in clearing encroachments on lakes and storm-water drains.
Defending the ongoing demolition of buildings in Bengaluru, he said he would also act against officials whose connivance had led to rampant misuse of lakes and drains.
“It is true that the demolition drive has caused inconvenience to some families. But it is necessary in the interest of a large number of citizens. We have to accept this reality,” he said.
Entire neighbourhoods suffer because illegal buildings block the flow of rain water in the rajakaluves (master channels), he said.
Citizens and the media will not spare the government if it fails to act despite last week’s floods in neighbourhoods such as Kodichikkanahalli, he said.
“We cannot allow a Chennai to happen in Bengaluru when it rains,” Siddaramaiah said, referring to the 2015 inundation that claimed 500 lives and displaced 18 lakh people in that city.
Speaking to reporters at the Vidhana Soudha after garlanding a statue of former chief minister S Nijalingappa, Siddaramaiah promised action against corrupt officials as well. Monday marks the 16th death anniversary of the venerable Congress leader.
“We will conduct a probe to ascertain lapses or collusion in allowing encroachments on rajakaluves and lakes. Action will be taken against errant officials,” Siddaramaiah said.
The assurance comes in the wake of complaints pouring in from those whose houses were demolished last weekend. A good number had obtained ownership deeds and plan sanctions from the BBMP. They had also been paying property tax for years.