Life below a live wire

Life below a live wire

Nexus between engineers and houseowners alleged

Life below a live wire

Thanks to a high tension wire that passes through the main road, which is posing a threat to the residents of this area. In the last three weeks, three persons were electrocuted, when they accidentally came in contact with the high voltage wire.

Two persons were electrocuted on March 21 when they were trying to fix a DTH box on the third floor of a house. An elderly woman suffered burn injuries in the incident. On March 28, a 16-year-old girl, who was trying to hang wet cloths on a wire on top of her second floor house, was electrocuted.

In Rajajinagar 6th block, which also comes under Magadi police station, a boy was electrocuted when he was trying to pluck a flower from a plant atop a building, a couple of years ago.

Unholy nexus

The citizens and police attribute the deaths to the unholy nexus between the house owners and corrupt BBMP engineers. Thanks to the collusion, many people have constructed residential and non-residential buildings violating norms, below the high tension wire. The Magadi Road police disclose that all the three deaths which occurred on the second and third floors, was due to the illegal construction of houses below the high tension wire.

There is a major station at Peenya which receives power from Jog Falls.  High tension wires which carry power from the receiving station, are distributed to many industrial units on Mysore Road and one such wire passes through the Manjunathnagar Main Road.
The BESCOM officials claim that they have followed the norms while installing towers/poles for the high tension wire, including acquiring of the land and paying adequate compensation to the land owners.

“Going by the rules, no construction is allowed below the high tension wire - residential or non-residential. There should not be any construction, 70 feet on either side of the tower/pole,” the Bescom officials say.

After collecting the compensation, the land owners have sold their plots for lesser prices to others. And those who have purchased the sites, have constructed houses and have obtained clearance certificate, by bribing the BBMP engineers.

False reports

“It’s a nexus, engineers rarely come for inspections to review any violation. They receive bribes from house owners and submit false reports,” said a police officer.

The BBMP officials’ response was shocking when asked to comment. “I cannot comment on the issue, contact other officials,” said Ananthaswamy, BBMP Chief Engineer (South Zone), entrusted to deal with such issues.

Additional Commissioner (South) V P Ikkeri said he was hearing such allegations for the first time. He did not know what happened before he took over. He said he would look into the matter and take appropriate steps.