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Nice in trouble for diverting land use

P M Raghunandan, Bangalore, Oct 31, 2012, DHNS :

In another jolt to the promoter of the vexed Bangalore Mysore Infrastructure Corridor (BMIC) project, the Bangalore Mysore Infrastructure Corridor Area Planning Authority (BMICAPA) has taken action against Nandi Infrastructure Corridor Enterprise (Nice) for allegedly utilising land for purposes other than those stated in the project’s Frame Work Agreement (FWA).

The BMICAPA has in the last few weeks slapped several notices on Nice and Nandi Economic Corridor Enterprise Limited (NECEL - a sister company of Nice) for allegedly taking up developmental projects, including construction of commercial complexes, residential houses and residential layouts, in the absence of clear land documents and without mandatory approval.

The BMICAPA, at its 34th meeting organised under the chairmanship of Additional Chief Secretary Kaushik Mukherjee on September 12, 2012, noted: “It has come to the notice that the NECEL has been seeking approvals for using lands for purposes other than those mentioned in the FWA (Interchange, Link Road and Peripheral Road, Expressway, Toll plaza and others).

It has been observed in certain cases that Karnataka Industrial Areas Development Board (KIADB) has given away land for creation of toll road assets under the BMIC project for 30 years and that they have to be returned to the government.”

Attachment of property

While ordering a probe into the alleged involvement of some prominent personalities in the alleged irregularities in the BMIC project, a Lokayukta court recently directed attachment of 259 acres of property that were handed over to two builders by NECEL.

The land was acquired for the purpose of developing peripheral road and link road under the project.

The meeting, the minutes of which are with this paper, further noted that despite the BMICAPA informing the company not to take up any developmental work without its permission, the company had done so. Hence, further action could be initiated in coordination with the Public Works Department, Revenue department and KIADB.
Empowered committee

It was decided in the meeting to place these issues before the Empowered Committee headed by the chief secretary, whose task is to oversee the implementation of the project, and not to allow the company to take up any work till then.

The company has sought permission for land use change for commercial and residential utilisation in various survey numbers of Tirumalapura and Kodigehalli villages of Yeshwantpur hobli, Varahasandra village and Kommaghatta village of Kengeri hobli and Hosakerehalli of Uttarahalli hobli.

The company has so far sought permission for land use change for about 100 acres. Except for one or two cases, the BMICAPA has not given permission in this regard. In some instances, BMICAPA has rejected applications of Nice seeking approval for layout plan, official sources said.

The meeting noted that certain documents mentioned that land had been acquired for peripheral road and interchange purposes. Hence, it is not clear whether commercial development could be allowed or not. The PWD and the KIADB have not bothered to respond to BMICAPA’s queries in this regard. The PWD is the nodal agency for project implementation, while KIADB has been entrusted with the job to acquire private land required for the project. BMICAPA member secretary H B Honnur, however, refused to comment.


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