Adyapady villagers live in a virtual island

15 flights fly over our heads everyday, but there are only two buses to travel, rues a villager

It is right in the backyard of ‘Mangalore International Airport’ but that does not give Adyapady village any mileage or advantage.

The only road that leads to Adyapady is full of dust and is in a pathetic condition.

Meet the villagers of Adyapady Padau settlement, most of whom have given their lands for the purpose of airport and later extension of the airport, at shoe string cost.

Despite never ending problems, now the villagers have stopped complaining about problems.

Instead they only mock at the situation that they have left with.

“There are 15 flights flying over our heads everyday, but there are only two buses for us to travel,” says Giriyappa, an elderly living in the colony.

There are absolutely no roads in this village. Dust, grit stones and pebbles cover the roads here and since most of the youth have two-wheelers, obnoxious accidents are a frequent scene. After the death of a youth recently who came under the wheels of a lorry, broken hands, fractured legs and bandaged heads do not scare the villagers any more.

It was about 60 years ago that large number of families gave their land for the cause of the airport. Out of the bunch of project displaced families, many were rehabilitated at Adyapady Padau. Situation only got worse with the extension of the airport which took place eight years ago. Since then, life has not changed for the residents. Over 400 families have been living in a virtual island with nobody to listen to their woes.

There is an anganwadi, a primary school, a PHC in the village, which are functional in a paralysed state. This compels the villagers to depend on Mangalore largely for education and medical care. However, the sorry state of affairs here do not make reaching Mangalore so easy.

Till recently, when the Adyapady Padu-Bajpe route was functional, Bajpe was just 5 kms away. This vital route was eaten away by the Airport Authority of India and as a result, the single road, now abruptly ends at the compound wall around the runway leaving the residents with one option- Kenjaru-Bajpe road, which has increased the distance to 12 kms.

Since laterite quarrying is the main business in the region (the region feeds laterite to Mangalore city), the frequent plying of heavy vehicles has taken toll on the roads. When the Adyapady-Bajpe road was closed and no other alternate was provided by the authorities, five out of seven buses which were plying on the route stopped plying. Today there are only two buses plying on this route.
Rs 350 per cent

The residents, say that they had given their land for airport and as compensation they were paid Rs 350 per cent. “Though the land was acquired decades ago, when they evicted us, the old rate was given and not the revised rate. We came and settled down because we thought the airport would do good to the region.

Unfortunately, this is what we get in return. Not even one official has turned this side, neither from the district administration nor from the Airport Authority of India,” says Anwar, a resident.

He says that though they had staged a protest some months ago demanding better roads, the then district-in-charge minister Krishna Palemar had said that Rs 12.5 crore has been sanctioned for the area. “Since then, we have been reading about this Rs 12.5 crore only in newspapers but nothing has materialised.

As of now, the villagers continue to live amidst booming sound of aircraft, rubber smell that follows the landing and take off of a flight and dust trail that the scheduled buses leave behind.

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