‘Realignment done to protect interests of well-connected persons’

Property owners in Venkatala village in Yelahanka hobli, whose properties have been notified for the 63-km-long Peripheral Ring Road (PRR) project, are crying foul over the lack of transparency in notifying properties for acquisition.

On Wednesday, a group of residents of Venkatala village told presspersons that their properties that had been excluded from the preliminary notification issued in 2005 were notified in the final notification issued in 2006. “Though we have been approaching the Bangalore Development Authority for clarity and what led to the change, no information has come forth,” said S. Shankar, a resident of Maruthi Nagar in Venkatala village.

Approved in 2004, the PRR was conceived to be a 109-km road with 60 m width around Bangalore at a cost of Rs. 550 crore. Original requirement of land for the project was 3,619 acres.

“Today, a 63-km stretch is being taken up in part one while only 10 km has been notified in part 2. The fate of the other part is not known. This is likely to cost a couple of thousands of crores,” he added.

According to him, at least 300 families that own houses or land will be affected by the realignment of the road, and added that reasons for realignment are still not known. “However, we feel that the realignment has been done to protect the interest of well connected persons whose lands are adjacent to Maruthi Nagar,” he added.

He said: “Many families took a loan to construct houses. If these properties are acquired, the families have nowhere to go. Besides, many among those set to lose properties are fighting serious health related issues.”

Mr. Shankar said that there has been no transparency in the changes that had been effected in the alignment and also the notification.

The residents, who have come under PRR 1 Affected Residents Welfare Committee, have said they were against the arbitrary changes made to the alignment.

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