BJP ex-MLA ‘snatches’ bulldozer keys to halt demolition drive in Karnataka

Doddanekundi, Anjanapura & Hoysala Nagar see encroachment clearance drives
A bulldozer demolishes illegal structures in Mahadevapura Zone during encroachment clearance drive in Bengaluru on Monday | KPN
A bulldozer demolishes illegal structures in Mahadevapura Zone during encroachment clearance drive in Bengaluru on Monday | KPN

BENGALURU: When Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) officials moved in with bulldozers in KR Puram Monday to clear encroachments, former BJP MLA Nandiesh Reddy allegedly snatched vehicle keys, and asked officials to stop the drive.

BBMP’s SWD department officials and Mahadevapura Zone engineers, along with land surveyors and the local police, began their encroachment clearance drive Monday morning.

While it was going on at Doddanekundi’s survey numbers 24/1, 3, 4, and 5, passing through Fern City Layout, villa residents began objecting. Soon, Reddy arrived at the scene and asked the officials to stop the drive. The engineers alleged Reddy snatched the keys of a bulldozer.

A BBMP engineer clarified they were complying with the orders of the tahsildar. “Despite objections, with help from around 50 police personnel, the compound wall, clubhouse building, swimming pool, sewage treatment plant, portions of buildings and compound wall, which were illegally constructed on the 200-m long storm water drain, were removed,” said the engineer.

Watching the demolition action, Reddy told media persons that BBMP should first remove stormwater drain obstructions. “Demolishing homes and properties in Fern City will push people onto the streets,” he said.

Senior officials of the stormwater drain department said that encroachment clearance drives were conducted at Doddanekundi, Anjanapura and Hoysala Nagar in Mahadevapura Zone Monday. The drive also saw the demolition of commercial establishments and a car service station.

Bulldozers were pressed into service at Anjanapura ward in Bommanahalli to clear encroachments on BDA approved Layout, and two shops, illegally constructed on parkland, were razed.

Senior SWD engineers held meetings with lawyers and discussed what recourse could be taken to file a caveat against 21 encroachers in Munnekollal. “Most of the owners have built PG accommodations and filed writ petitions in the Karnataka HC against the tahsildar’s eviction order under various sections of the Karnataka Land Revenue Act. They have obtained stay orders. The legal team has been asked to file a caveat soon,” said an engineer of the Mahadevapura Zone.

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