Indiranagar traders divided over BBMP’s eviction drive

Some say civic body is biased towards bars and restaurants

BBMP

Besides the growing rift between residents and commercial establishments in Indiranagar over the zonal irregularities, it now seems like the businesses themselves are divided over the issue.

Businesses established in the locality for the last 30 years point a finger at the mushrooming pubs and bars for the resentment among residents and the BBMP’s move to evict all businesses from the locality.

“Problem began when pubs, restaurants and bars started business without proper facilities,” said S G Aditya from Indiranagar owners and traders welfare association. “Most of them are rooftop bars functioning in second or third floors and offer valet parking.”

Aditya said while visitors used to park in empty lots, cars are left before gates of residential buildings. “As a result, residents blame all commercial units for their troubles,” he added.

Nearly 250 members of the local traders association met on Tuesday to discuss the issues affecting them. Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) officials were also present at the meeting.

Traders asked the civic body officials to explain why the Indiranagar Club and pubs politically well connected are spared when the BBMP slap eviction orders on them. They alleged that the pubs, restaurants and bars brought bad name to traders in the locality.

Traders also point out that 500 out of 1,000 commercial units in Indiranagar are small time traders like laundry, grocery, stationery, small time eateries and offices.

“These shops are what residents need every day. When pubs, bars and roof top joints were being set up 5-10 years back, why did BBMP issue trade licences? Why did residents look the other way when their neighbours rented out spaces for commercialisation?” asked a trader.  

“We are like farmers who have taken loans to set up shops. If our shops are closed we will be forced to work as coolies or commit suicide,” the trader added.

Residents appealed to BBMP and the state government to regulate commercialisation by ensuring that no new trade licences are issued and renewal is done prudently.

Traders also say that the 30-metre rule is currently followed only in Indiranagar while the civic body and the government have turned a blind eye to the rest of the city, especially in CBD.

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Indiranagar traders divided over BBMP’s eviction drive

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