Road closure would cause misery : Corporators

02 October 2009

A proposal by the district administration to close vehicular traffic along the road in front of Circuit House connecting NH 17 at Padavu has caused consternation among residents of the area. The proposal is part of a move by the administration along with the Mangalore City Corporation to declare nearly 40 acres of land there as a green belt. This proposal, if notified, could put all future constructions in the area on hold.

The issue came up for discussion at the monthly meeting of the civic body on Tuesday, with Ashok Shetty raising it during the question hour. Stating that the administration is contemplating to ban movement of traffic on the stretch, Ashok urged mayor M Shankar Bhat to adopt a resolution against the proposal. This will cause untold misery to around 200 families in the area, he said.

Corporator Rekha D Bangera claimed that the authorities had issued notices to individual households on the closure of the road and this had caused confusion in the minds of people. "We (the corporators) are not in a position to assuage their fears and the loss of road connectivity will put people to hardships," she said.

Naveen D'Souza, corporator, claimed that the deputy commissioner had mooted an idea to declare the area as a green belt, a move that effectively bans all future constructions in the area. People have been residing in this area for ages now, Naveen said, adding that the pros and cons of any move - either to close the road or declare the area as a green belt will have to be carefully considered before a final decision is taken.

Addressing concerns of the corporators, Bhat said the administration is trying to protect the area with help from the civic body. "The area is home to perennial natural springs that have religious significance and are revered by people," he said. Unbridled construction of varying nature in the area is affecting the very existence of these springs, some of which are drying up, he said.

Agreeing with the views of corporators, he that construction activity that is residential in nature needs to be exempted from the purview of any proposal in this regard, while banning commercial ventures. Bhat asserted that the proposal will not have any bearing on people residing in the area nor will access to their homes be cut.

DC V Ponnuraj told TOI that he is taking forward a proposal mooted by his predecessor Maheshwar Rao. Two round of meetings with district in-charge minister as well as field visits have been held to take forward this proposal, which is at a formative stage. Admitting that this has however led to rumour mongering, the DC clarified that there will be no eviction of people residing in the area.

Options such as providing transfer of development rights, land exchange to land owners likely to be affected if the area is ultimately declared a green belt are being contemplated. On plans to close the road in front of circuit house for vehicles, he said a service road along NH 17 from U Srinivas Mallya statute at Padua to KPT junction is being planned to mitigate the likely inconvenience to motorists.

source times of india


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