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BBMP broke HC order by demolishing labourers’ shacks

Last Updated : 20 January 2020, 20:47 IST
Last Updated : 20 January 2020, 20:47 IST

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Two children at a shack in Kundalahalli on Monda. DH PHOTO/S K DINESH
Two children at a shack in Kundalahalli on Monda. DH PHOTO/S K DINESH
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The BBMP’s move to demolish shanties in Kariyammana Agrahara not only goes against procedure but also is in direct contravention of a Karnataka High Court order, which had stayed the eviction of residents on August 30, 2018.

The BBMP had given notice to residents to vacate the premises in 2018 following a complaint made by the Mantri Espana apartment owners. However, the court ordered interim stay on the notice.

But on Sunday, the BBMP swooped down on the residents. With help of Marathahalli police and HAL police, the civic body evicted more than 150 families in Kariyammana Agrahara and 100 families in Kundalahalli. They also tried to evict migrants near Thubarahalli lake but due to the intervention of activists they left with warning.

There are more than 220 shanties in Kundalahalli, where 50% residents are from West Bengal while the other 50% are from Andhra Pradesh and North Karnataka.

Near Thubarahalli lake, there are nearly 2,000 shanties and most of them are from West Bengal. In Kariyammana Agrahara, there are nearly 3,500 shanties. Migrants pay Rs 1,000 to Rs 2000 as rent, with nearly four to five staying in a 10/10 shanty.

Goutham Mandal, 21, a resident of Kariyammana Agrahara and native of West Bengal, said four bachelors stay in one shed by paying Rs 500 each.

Mandal, who is employed as housekeeping staff in a private firm, was at work when his shed was demolished on Saturday at around 5 pm.

All his citizenship documents, including NRC, was under the debris when he rushed back to his shed. He was able to retrieve the documents in the morning.

“I am a Bengali and Hindu. How can they do it without informing and verifying the documents,” he said.

Sadik Pasha, a resident of Kundalahalli and a native of Medinapur in West Bengal, said thousands of workers from Bengal worked as construction labours in the city. Pasha said labourers like him built infrastructure in the city but now they are chasing us out from this city.

A lot of women are working as domestic helps. When they leave, it is going to create an imbalance in the city, he claimed.

Kaleemullah, a social activist and a resident of Thubarahalli, said all West Bengal residents would be filing a petition before the High Court likely this week against the eviction of Indian citizens.

“All these migrants have proper documents to show their citizenship. Authorities should check them and should not chase them from the city. Police are making illegal detentions to scare these migrants,” he said.

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Published 20 January 2020, 19:43 IST

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