Home dreams of poor may drown in lake land scam

Recovery of encroached water body area may stall housing project

Home dreams of poor may drown in lake land scam

Meddling with revenue records pertaining to the Subramanyapura Lake has cast its shadow over the Rs 38-crore project of the Karnataka Slum Development Board (KSDB) to construct 880 quarters for the urban poor, adjacent to the Subramanyapura Lake in Uttarahalli.

The project is supposed to come up on Survey No 6 of Subramanyapura village, but a good portion of it is coming up on Survey No 64 of Uttarahalli village, which is the Subramanyapura Lake. The Supreme Court and High Court directions are very clear that no residential or commercial buildings should come up on lakes.

In the last week of January this year, the then Deputy Commissioner (Bangalore Urban), G C Prakash, notified the entire Survey No 64 as Subramanyapura Lake through an order.

Documents available with Deccan Herald show that the extent of Subramanyapura Lake was about 44 acres which reduced to 18 acres and six guntas in the record of Rights, Tenancy and Crop (RTC).

As this damage was not enough, the latest survey conducted by revenue officials show that Survey No 64 is 10 acres and 20 guntas.

At the receiving end of the foul play are slum-dwellers, as a good portion of the KSDB project is on lake land.

KSDB executive engineer Balan told Deccan Herald that a portion of Survey No 64 comes under their project.

“The portion of Survey No 64 falling in our project will be used for developing parks,” said Balan.

According to Balan, BDA has acquired 36 acres of land in Survey No 6, of which seven acres and 12 guntas have been given to them, while the remaining portion has been given to a house building cooperative society.

Balan too opined that the survey sketch of the Subramanyapura lake showing Survey No 64 as 10 acres and 20 guntas prepared by the revenue department was faulty. He said land is much more than what is shown in the survey sketch of the lake. But he did not elaborate.

Uttarahalli Nagaraj, a local leader, emphasised on the need for the re-inspection of Survey No 64 and adjacent Gomala land.

“It is a matter of grave concern that the lake land is being used by government agencies for residential and commercial purposes. Courts directions are very clear that lake land cannot be used for any purpose other than tree plantation,” said Nagaraj.

Leo Saldanha of Environment Support Group voiced a similar concern.

“The entire Survey No 64 is now a lake, but there is ambiguity about the actual extent of the lake. The RTC says the lake is 18 acres and six guntas, while the survey sketch shows 10 acres and 20 guntas. To clear the confusion, a fresh survey of Survey No 64 should be done,” said Saldanha.

MLA speaks

Speaking to Deccan Herald, Bangalore South MLA, M Krishnappa, said the KSDB project was coming up on Survey No 6.

He said he was neither aware of the reduction of the extent of Gomala land from 18 acres and six guntas to 10 acres and 20 guntas nor has he seen the new survey sketch prepared by the revenue officials.

But he refuted Deccan Herald's story that appeared on May 20 under the title, 'The gobble story of Gomala land'.

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