BENGALURU: With Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy scheduled to attend a meeting to review the elevated corridor project on Monday, Citizens for Bengaluru (CfB) has made a final appeal to him to shelve the project.
The citizens’ group has posted charts on Facebook which depict the relative disadvantages of the corridor project, juxtaposed with the advantages of improving the suburban train network. The post urges Kumaraswamy to "ask the right questions in the meeting". The group has for long pitched for improvement of the suburban rail network as an alternative to the elevated corridor project to decongest the city's roads.
One of the charts displays how 1,100 two-wheelers and 300 cars are added to the city's roads every day, and in contrast, the project for suburban network has been pending for 33 years. Another point in a chart states that the cost of the corridors project is `300 crore per km, while that of the rail network is `3 crore.
Srinivas Alavilli, chief convener of CfB, said that when citizens initially met Deputy Chief Minister G Parameshwara, the latter had assured them that the project would only be approved following a public consultation. However, later, Parameshwara publicly announced the government's support for the project.
"They sought environmental clearance for the project, which should come at a later stage," he said. The revelation that the project would lead to 3,821 trees being chopped increased the opposition to it from citizens. Alavilli said the government's lack of transparency made it seem like it was trying to quietly push the project.
Alavilli said in case the project was approved on Monday, citizens will question it in a public space. He appealed to the CM and Parameshwara to "hold public consultation".The elevated corridors project consists of six interconnected stretches across 95km in the city. It's cost was initially pegged at `15,825 crore, but as per a report the cost is `33,600 crore.