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Updated: February 19, 2013 11:21 IST

Twists and turns instatue shifting row

Special Correspondent
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The High Court of Karnataka has expressed concern over keeping the Ambedkar statue suspended till September. File photo: Sampath Kumar G.P
The High Court of Karnataka has expressed concern over keeping the Ambedkar statue suspended till September. File photo: Sampath Kumar G.P

BMRCL says work is far from over

Contrary to the State government’s claim that work on Namma Metro that may pose danger to the Ambedkar statue in front of the Vidhana Soudha is over, Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd (BMRCL) on Monday made it clear to the Karnataka High Court that the work will be completed only in September.

A BMRCL affidavit said, “blasting of rocks below the statue and all other works around the pedestal would be completed by September 2013 after which the statue can be fixed back in place to the pedestal.”

Controlled blasting

BMRCL told the court that in the present circumstances, as the statue is now not attached to the pedestal, work below can be carried out by controlled blasting methods. It was only after the Department of Public Works detached the statue from its pedestal and kept it in a suspended position using a crane on February 8 did BMRCL tell its contractor to go ahead with the work.

In fact, from February 8 till date, the contractor has carried out nine controlled blasts without any danger to the statue and that work can be expedited as envisaged, the affidavit said.

Concern

A Division Bench comprising acting Chief Justice K. Sreedhar Rao and S. Abdul Nazeer, which heard the arguments, had expressed concern over the safety of the statue in keeping it suspended till September while adjourning hearing to Wednesday. It had observed: “Will the heaven fall if the statue is kept aside for safety purposes? Even in temples, they take out statues in such situations. This court had already passed an order on December 12, 2012 to shift it within 15 days. The State had also filed an application seeking two months to implement the order. That order has attained finality. Hence, there is already an order operating against the State. In this background, how can the State argue like this?”

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