BANGALORE CITY TOWN PLANNING

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Come election time, and the momentary haphazard buzz in civic amenities sprout every where, a total eyewash and an utter waste and drain of resources, resorted to by every single government dying to be in power.

In Bangalore, we have our town planning bodies like the CMC, BMP, BBMP, etc, and of course a host of bigwigs heading them, calling themselves commissioners, deputy commissioners, etc. etc., who neither have the education, knowledge, or the interest in the city’s development, or social welfare except to fill up their pockets before their term comes to an end.

I have just returned from the US after being there for over 25 years to be united with the place I once grew up in, Whitefield. Featured in my video is a street, supposedly connecting a so called posh location bang behind the International Tech Park called Prashanth Extension. The video covers part of the road running directly behind the extension. The road, a now BBMP converted mud track, was asphalted earlier but dug up recently to lay down massive sewage pipes which start and end nowhere, with of course no sewage treatment plant anywhere in sight. Come the rains, and believe me this road is unfit for even pedestrian use. A few years back just before the elections, the BBMP laid Cauvery water pipes to quench the thirst of water starved residents here. Pipes were laid just about in any odd location with no connectivity. Now, the BBMP claims these pipes will never see water flowing in them simply because of an acute water shortage due to the swell in Bangalores population.

The road viewed in the film starts from the Whitefield main road, directly opposite the Syndicate Bank. As you enter it, to the right, you will see heaps and heaps of stinking garbage piled and scattered, crying to be disposed off but with no bin in sight. As you go along, two structures to your left along this mud track are new apartments constructed by Vishnu Priya Builders, receivers of the coveted Bharat Jyothi award and Shilpa Excellence Award. Freely emanating from these two apartments is sewage merrily flowing into a makeshift drain loaded with lumps of excreta bobbing up and down. As you try desperately to whizz past this bumpy mud stretch, you almost hit right into a BBMP garbage bin a little ahead, supposedly the only one in the entire area literally overflowing with muck taking up almost the entire road as captured in the video. Shortly after this is an example of how BBMP issues indiscriminate building permits only later to be regularized during election time. This building seen in the video is under construction, and slated to hit 5 floors with obviously no provision for sewage, garbage disposal, etc. The drain supposedly to the right of you has been built upon, so soon we will soon witness the Vishnu Priya’s style of disposing waste. Behind this building is of course Prashant Layout, a prime locality dotted with many, many more unauthorized structures sanctioned by the BBMP. Of note, the street in the video is connected with an exclusive provision for lighting, but nights have been pitch dark for years, not to mention of water scarcity and power shut downs for almost 5-7 hours a day.

Recently, the Prashant Layout residents were overjoyed to learn that the BBMP have started laying concrete drains, another stunt of the ruling BJP govt. In reality, as in all of Bangalore, drains are only in name as we know and they are not meant to carry any wastewater, but more appropriately huge trenches for collection of garbage soaked in sewage rotting before our very houses.

I cant help but take you to the next parallel road south of this mud track. Here, there is another poll gimmick as you will notice that this road is asphalted by the BBMP, but only a for a very short walkable distance before it abruptly ends in front of a large battleground looking area. I am told a big builder has got around the BBMP to register this 6 acre plot for double the area and then hired its own private army to go forth in a massive land grabbing spree to make up for the shortage causing mayhem in the area. This, is one of the most unique and popular features of the BBMP where it deliberately permits multiple registrations for the same property. In the end, you will find several owners holding a sale deed for the same property all fighting each other in the already overcrowded courts which today in fact accounts for almost 50% of similar cases in Bangalore alone.

Well, isn’t it time that you and I as citizens who elect our governments, intervene and start questioning about their performance and accounting and put an end to this never ending plague before this once beautiful city is soon renamed as the Garbage City of India

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