People power forces rethink on Lalbagh

Govt respects public opinion: CM
Last Updated : 29 May 2010, 19:47 IST

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  “We will not impose any decision on the people. We have not taken any decision as such,” he said.

 The State’s plan was to have a laser show and a rock garden in Lalbagh.
The CM said before arriving at a decision, the government will advertise its plans, take public opinion before embarking on any moves on Lalbagh. He said the government would consult morning walkers of Lalbagh on the issue, adding the State’s intention was just to develop the lake.

Deccan Herald, in its column ‘Lalbagh or Fun Park?’ has been reflecting the opinion of the citizens regarding the plans of the Horticulture Department to conduct a laser show and install a musical fountain near the Kempegowda rock. Bangaloreans and environmentalists have largely been opposing the move.

Transport Minister, R Ashok, who is also in charge of Bangalore South, said he had discussed the public opposition to the Lalbagh plans with the chief minister. Heeding public opinion, the government would reconsider the plans, he said, admitting laser shows in the evenings might disturb birds in the park.

“I am a Bangalorean. I also love the city and Lalbagh. It is one place that has remained a lung space for the city for more than 200 years. And, it is our failure that we have not been able to create one more Lalbagh. We will not take up any project that affects the beauty and the serenity of the park,” he told reporters, after inaugurating the ‘Mango Mela’ at Lalbagh.

Ashok, however, said the proposed rock garden would not harm the historic rock in any way. The objective was only to beautify the area around the rock with more plants. The thrust would be to provide basic amenities for visitors.

However, “I will consult environmentalists and consider public opinions expressed in the media”, he said.

Ashok said Chickpet MLA, Hemachandra Sagar, under whose jurisdiction the Lalbagh area falls, would speak to representatives of Lalbagh Walkers’ Association and others. He would also discuss the issue with other MLAs before going ahead on the matter.

Horticulture Department Director, N Jayaram, said, “We will not take any decision against the sentiments of the people. I have read what experts such as Yellappa Reddy have said. I will put forth the reactions of the people before my seniors.”

He insisted that the Government had no plans to make it an amusement park. “We have no plans to grow grass on the rocks or disturb it in any way. There are some quarrying pits around it which can be cleaned up,” Jayaram said.

Published 29 May 2010, 19:35 IST

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