Notices issued to 277 unauthorised religious structures on government land

The managements have been given two weeks to respond to the notice

March 11, 2021 08:11 am | Updated 08:11 am IST

Days after submitting before the Karnataka High Court that it had identified 2,170 unauthorised religious structures on government property, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), as of March 5, had issued show cause notices to 277 structures that were built after September 29, 2009, the cut-off date set by the apex court for preventing such constructions.

BBMP Commissioner N. Manjunath Prasad told The Hindu that the civic body has given the management of these religious structures two weeks to respond to the notice. After receiving their response, the civic body will take a decision on a case-by-case basis and issue a summary order for the demolition of these structures. “The management will be required to demolish the respective structures. If they fail to do so, the BBMP will demolish it and recover the cost from them. A report on the same will be submitted to the High Court. The next hearing is on March 26,” he said.

The civic body had submitted the survey report to the High Court, which is hearing a PIL petition, initiated suo motu by the court to enforce the apex court’s directions on preventing unauthorised religious structures on public property.

Of the 2,170 unauthorised religious structures, 1,893 were on government property and constructed before the cut-off date. Of these, 240 have been recommended for demolition, 105 for relocation and remaining 1,548 for regularisation.

Incidentally, the affidavit was filed after the third survey of unauthorised religious structures in the city. Following the first survey, the BBMP claimed there were just 111 religious structures of which 17 were constructed after September 2009. After being pulled up by the court, a second survey was taken up where the BBMP submitted a report claiming there were 1,588 religious structures, of which nearly 1,240 existed before September 2009. The third survey was taken up after the court found fault with the methodology.

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