Site largesse extends to staff, too

Site largesse extends to staff, too

Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa made prime land allotments to not only his relatives but also his office staff.

Surekha Sangappa of Bookanakere in Mandya — where Yeddyurappa was born — has been bestowed with a 60X40 site at JP Nagar 8th Phase. She is closely related to one of chief minister’s sons-in-law.

A BDA site measuring 60X40 sqft costs about Rs 5.20 lakh but it is worth crores of rupees in the real estate market.

What’s intriguing is that a list of BDA site allottees obtained under the Right To Information Act by this newspaper does not mention who Sangappa is or the criterion under which she was granted the residential plot.

In yet another case, T Rajashekhar, a temporary staffer at Yeddyurappa’s home office, has been sanctioned a BDA site at HSR Layout II Phase. Rajashekhar, a retired high school headmaster, is from Shiralakoppa in Shikaripura represented by the chief minister in the Assembly. Yeddyurappa appointed him a PRO on contract basis. His son is a television journalist.

Since his ascendancy to power, Yeddyurappa has allotted 191 BDA sites under the G category. The list obtained from the BDA does not have any information about the beneficiaries. One of the beneficiaries on the list is said to be the wife a priest who performs pooja daily at the chief minister’s residence.

The BDA list includes his son B Y Raghavendra, his sister B S Premamma, his nephew S C Ashok, and a close relative, M Deepa. However, after the BJP central leadership pulled up the chief minister for his overt nepotism in allotting sites, most of his kin surrendered the sites.

The Bangalore Development Authority allots sites to only those who don’t possess any property in the capital. But Raghavendra was allotted a site despite him owning a flat and other non-residential properties in Bangalore.

But in recent times, it has been a practice among the chief ministers to allot sites to people’s representatives.

B M Shivakumar, an RTI activist who gleaned information about the chief minister allotting sites to his kith and kin, said there was no rule in the BDA Act that stipulated that sites should be given to people’s representatives. Under the discretionary quota of the chief minister, sites can be allotted only to eminent personalities who have made significant contribution to society.

“While MLAs and MPs get sites in prime locations, those who have been waiting for years are given sites on the city outskirts. Even if they secure a site, they end up paying a higher price than those who get sites under the G category. The government should scrap this category,” he said.

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