Tahsildar told to treat BDA as land-grabber

Agency is accused of developing an illegal layout on a tank bed
Last Updated 18 September 2014, 19:30 IST

In a major embarrassment to Bangalore Development Authority (BDA), Upa Lokayukta Justice Subhash B Adi on Wednesday directed the Bangalore South Tahsildar Dr Dayananda to treat BDA as a land-grabber, and lodge a complaint against its officials at the Talaghattapura police station.

Justice Adi gave the direction while hearing a complaint by J Kumaraswamy against the BDA layout on Venkatarayana Kere at Gubbalala village in Uttarahalli hobli of Bangalore South taluk.

When BDA officials, including its land acquisition officer and deputy secretary, contended that the land acquisition process was initiated as per the rules to form a layout, Justice Adi blasted them: “It is beyond doubt that Survey No 8 of Gubbalala village is a tank. Village map, Record of Rights, Tenancy and Crops (RTC), Tippani (revenue notes) and other revenue records clearly show it to be a tank. What else is required to prove that it is a tank bed?”

The Additional Commissioner of Bangalore Urban district and the Bangalore South tahsildar too confirmed that Sy No 8 is a tank bed.

When Justice Adi sought documents relating to the land acquisition process, BDA officials said that all the original records pertaining to Venkatarayana Kere had been submitted to the Bangalore Metropolitan Task Force (BMTF), which is probing the same case.

When Justice Adi sought the status of Sy No 10, which is adjacent to the Venkatarayana Kere, Tahsildar Dayananda said that it too was a government land and had been encroached upon. Justice Adi directed him to survey both the lands in Sy No 8 and 10 within a week, identify the land encroachers and register cases against them.

When Dayananda asked whether those who have been allotted sites in the tank bed should be treated as encroachers, Justice Adi said, “Site owners are innocent. It is the BDA which has encroached upon a tank. Make a complaint of tank land encroachment against the BDA at the Talaghattapura police station and submit a compliance report by the next date of hearing on October 20.”

He also directed the BDA officials to bring all the records by October 20, along with plans to reclaim the land and alternative arrangements for those who have been allotted sites and those who have constructed houses on them.

Inspector reprimanded
Justice Adi then took the Station House Officer of Bana­shankari police station to task for refusing to entertain a complaint by a BDA engineer named Vishwanath who had complained against MLC D U Mallikarjun for threatening him while evicting encroachments from the BDA land.

Justice Adi blasted the police officer, “Who else will protect a government officer if not another government officer? Where else should a complainant go other than the police station seeking refuge and protection? Register a case and send a compliance report by this evening.”
Earlier in the day, the Bangalore South Tahsildar inspected the lakebed layout to furnish an inspection report to Justice Adi.

(Published 18 September 2014, 19:30 IST)

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