Road widening or not?

A group of people protested in front of the Prestige Monte Carlo (PMC) apartment on June 11th along Doddaballapur road, Yelahanka. The protestors demanded relinquishing PMC land for widening of Ananthapura village road. This internal road starts from Doddballapur road and goes perpendicular to it, all the way up to Ramagondanahalli village, about 3 kms away. A half kilometre stretch of the road has been widened already.

The protestors started arriving at 7.30 am. The police had arrived at 7 am; G Ramesh, Deputy Commissioner of Police (North East), and the local area police inspector were present.

At 8 am, all entry and exit points were blocked by protestors and the police did not  interfere. Thereafter the protestors also blocked part of Doddaballapur Road and started shouting slogans. There were very few local residents in this group; most of them were from the organisation Karnataka Rakshana Vedike (KRV). Since the group was not representative of local residents, we decided not to interact with them.

Protest being held on Doddaballapur road. Pic: PMC Apartment Owners Association

As a result of the blockade, around 500 working residents – including two Kingfisher Airline pilots, one Spicejet Airline pilot, three doctors and eight school children who had exams, were forcibly restrained inside the building.There was no violence though.

The apartment association already has court orders to not give up land for road widening. The road goes along the south boundary of the apartment. 

Earlier, BBMP had tried to widen the road from the existing 9-11 m to 18 m, even though the city’s RMP (Revised Master Plan-2015) has not marked the road for widening. We had gone to court protesting road widening, and court had ruled in our favour. But even after this, some miscreants demolished the compound wall of our apartment. We went to court again, and got a police protection order in our favour, so that the wall could be re-built.

On Monday, workers who are re-building the wall were not allowed entry, despite the court order. If our land is taken away for widening, utilities including two water tanks and a sewage treatment plant will be lost. Protestors stopped the blockade at 12 pm. But they have threatened to carry on such acts every day until PMC gives away the land for road widening.

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