Lake encroachments: Officials to visit spots for cross-verification

Lake encroachments: Officials to visit spots for cross-verification

Jurisdictional assistant commissioners of the Bengaluru Urban and Rural districts will commence spot inspections from March 1 to cross-verify the responses made to notices issued to encroachers of lakes in the two districts.

A decision to this effect was taken at a meeting of the legislature committee on lake encroachments headed by senior legislator K B Koliwad in Bengaluru on Monday.

Speaking to reporters after holding a review meeting with the Bengaluru Development Authority (BDA), Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), revenue officials among others, Koliwad told reporters that the last date to reply to the notices had been extended to February 29 from January 31.

The committee, after a survey conducted by the Directorate of Settlement and Land Records, had come to the conclusion that of the total 57,576.17 acres of lake land in the two districts, 10,472.34 acres had been encroached upon. The revenue department has been instructed to issue notices to 11,595 encroachers.

Koliwad said based on the report filed by the ACs, the panel will submit its report and recommendations to the legislature. The committee also decided to constitute a supervisory panel to ascertain whether the surveys conducted on lakes were authentic and factually correct. The committee took the decision following some differences in statistics on lake encroachments made available to it by different agencies. “We will recommend disciplinary action against officials if we find that there have been deliberate manipulations during the survey,” Koliwad said.

As a case in point, Koliwad pointed out that only vacant space had been surveyed in Yelachenahalli lake, while the actual encroachment had been left out. “We have already instructed the principal secretary of the revenue department to take action against the officials responsible for the lapses,” he said.

The committee took strong objection to the fact that the process of issuance of notices to encroachers was yet to commence in the Bengaluru Rural district.
Committee member Suresh Kumar pointed out that the BBMP processing plant at Seegehalli-Kallahalli had come up without the required mandatory buffer zone.

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