Borewell Road residents in doldrums again, as BBMP plans road-widening

The residents of Borewell Road in Whitefield are a worried lot. This once-peaceful, residential stretch is being targeted for road widening – for the second time in six years! This will result in many old homes and new apartments being demolished.

Six years ago, the compound walls of homes were illegally razed and the road was widened on either side by 8 ft. All this, while the authorities claimed helpless to intervene and stop this act. Residents had to re-build their walls and repair their homes at their own expense. Now, six years later, this spectre has resurrected, to haunt them again.

On Monday, 5 August 2013, at about 3 pm, notices were issued to residents stating that up to 8 metres (over 25 ft) of their properties would be acquired, once again, for road widening. The notices dated 25 March, 2013 were served to residents only on 5 August 2013.

The notice issued by the BBMP Roads/ Infrastructure division says that in accordance with RMP 2015, Nallurahalli Main road (Borewell road) that connects SH 35 and Vaidehi Hospital main road, will be widened to make it a 24-meters wide road (80 feet). Under KTCP act, those whose property is being acquired have to apply for TDR right away – within 15 days of receiving the notice. If there’s no application for TDR, BBMP will proceed with legal steps to acquire the properties.

BBMP has marked the compounds on Borewell Road indicating that those properties will have to be acquired for road widening.

Callousness of BBMP

As the notice had no official seal, signature or proper residential address, affected residents visited the Mahadevapura BBMP office for confirmation. The clerk on duty verified that the notices were indeed authentic, and when residents protested that this would result in demolition of their homes, his callous answer was “So what? I don’t even own a home!”

For whose benefit is this road being widened?  Is it to benefit those working in ITPL and the EPIP Zone who have begun using this road as a shortcut to avoid delays at the traffic signal at Hope Farm junction? Or is it being done to facilitate the sale of hundreds of new apartments that have sprung up on narrow roads beyond Borewell Road, without proper infrastructure, water or sewage lines?

Obviously, the only ones who will not benefit from road widening are the residents themselves, some of who have been living here for over 30 years.

However, there is an alternate. Borewell Road can be made one-way, whilst the parallel Devi Karumari Amma Temple Road can be made one way in the opposite direction. Both roads finally end up near Vaidehi Hospital. This would be a win-win situation for all, and should be seriously considered.

It certainly is not right that residents were not consulted regarding development of their own neighbourhood. What was conceived, arbitrarily, as part of a Comprehensive Development Plan seems to be more of a Comprehensive “Destruction” Plan – at least, for the residents of Borewell Road.

3 Comments

  1. This has become a joke by the BBMP and other govt. agencies. They neither have a long term view nor they work on a workable solution. It’s all about finding an easy way out to displace people, damage their properties and put it all under the name of developmental causes. Is there a justification to widen the road from BBMP? If they believe by widening the road they will reduce the traffic congestion on this road, they are sadly mistaken!!! Today if 1000 people take this road, couple of years from now there will be 10,000 vehicles that will ply on this road. Are they planning to make it a 200 ft road and ask all residents to move out of Whitefield? I have been staying here since 2005 and find this logic not just ridiculous but downright senseless. I am sure there is a bigger nexus behind it. There are larger land grabbing mafia who want a large piece of the increasing demand for residential land in Whitefield. And the BBMP and other govt. agencies are more than happy to support them, of course at a price, which is paid under the table! Why else would you want to convert a residential by lane into a 80 ft road?? Aren’t there more direct roads to connect Whitefield with EPIP? Is this not harassment to the people whose basic rights of finding a space to live-in is being compromised in the name of development? Like suggested above there are so many ways to find a solution to the ever increasing traffic problem in the area – make the road one way could be one of the most reasonable one. But these solutions do not come in the mind of the officials!! Strange!!! Why do we need allow large buses – both company buses and school buses to ply in a residential area? There are bigger, wider roads. Make the infrastructure better in those roads. People use these shortcut roads and do not take the larger roads because of the amount of time they need to spend on those roads, which are in bad condition because of all the digging that happens every year. People start taking these shortcuts, shortcuts become main roads after sometime because of the number of vehicles plying, then widen them, displace people from there and make life difficult for them… and in the entire bargain make more money in the name of development! What a fantastic way to buy a house or two for the clerk in BBMP office who doesn’t have one right now!! Way to go, Guys!!!

  2. I am one of the affected person who has struggled to save little by little hard earned (day and night working) money and bought a flat on the Borewell Road. I never thought even in my wildest dreams that this action by the BBMP could be justified for 2nd time in a row (within a span of 6 years) with the same affected people. Now it is 12.45am in the night and i am sleepless checking any news about the borewell road widening on the internet to have found this news article. Look at the fate of the honest tax paying people in India who has sleepness night :(…its irony that even to purchase a house or a flat we have to work day and night..and for it to be protected, one has to again loose sleep!! As suggested by the above article, why cant the concerned authorities think of making a one-way???? Borewell Road is not meant for the ITPL or EPIP right..its for the residents of the Borewell Road ….what sense it makes for the short-cut route to be made as a main 80 feet road??? We all need to form groups and engage in a dharna and stop any yellow board vehicle to ply via the Borewell Road to reach the ITPL. Then the officials would wake up to the reality that this is a short-route and the main route is via Hopefarm.

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