The High Court of Karnataka has stayed the auction of corner sites in Arkavathi Layout in the city while observing that the Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) “cannot act as a private real estate company to maximise the profit” by auctioning corner sites ignoring the plight of allottees, who were deprived of allotted sites in the layout due to BDA’s fault.
Justice Suraj Govindaraj passed the interim order on three separate petitions filed by T.S.S.N. Manjunath Rao, Manjula R. Shetty, and Indumathi Babu Shekar, who owned a site each in Arkavathi Layout 7th block as BDA had executed sale deeds in their favour in respect of allotted sites.
The grievance of the petitioners was that BDA, without issuing any notice to them, had utilised their sites for formation of road citing redesign of the layout, and now wanted to allot alternative sites in Nadaprabhu Kempegowda Layout.
The petitioners alleged that BDA, after realising its gross mistake of forming sites within the buffer zone of a secondary nala, on its own modified the layout plan, approved it by itself, obliterated the sites by forming road and now wants to allot alternative sites to them around 35 kilometres away.
Appearing for the petitioners, advocate Deepak Bhaskar argued that the BDA could have allotted sites within Arkavathi Layout instead of auctioning the sites to third parties, and the BDA needed to explore this possibility before allotting sites to the petitioners in Kempegowda Layout.
The court also observed: “The preference of allotment ought to be given to the allottees who have already been allotted sites instead of bringing new persons as auction purchasers thereby increasing the litigation pertaining to the Arkavathi Layout. The BDA cannot act as a private real estate company to maximise the profit by auctioning corner sites but has to have empathy to resolve the dispute of existing allottees.”
“When there are several issues relating to allottees that are pending resolution and those allottees are being made to run from pillar to post, and are approaching this court seeking various reliefs, it would not be to any one’s benefit if the BDA is permitted to go on with auctioning corner sites or otherwise until the issues relating to the existing allottees are sorted out,” the court observed.