Skip to Content

Now, a parking lot under Military Memorial Park

209 users have liked.

Green activists are up in arms against BBMP's plan to construct a basement parking bay inside Indira Gandhi Musical Fountain park. Speaking to TOI, Vinay Srinivasa of Hasiru Usiru, an NGO, said that the project was ridiculous. "If there is no space to park the vehicles, construct a similar basement parking behind the police commissioner's office, but why inside a park,'' he asked.

According to him, it is violation of the Karnataka Park, Playfields and Open Spaces Act 1984. "As per the rulebook, no non-park activities, apart from facilitating toilets, can be constructed inside a park. Construction of parking lot is unimaginable. Even the judiciary has failed in protecting this park though we have a law to protect the same," he added.

For environmentalist A N Yellappa Reddy, the concern is not just that six trees will be chopped, but how it will impact the oxygen in the surrounding areas. "What BBMP needs to do is to develop tree parks inside places like the Palace, Race Course, and Central College cricket club to compensate the loss," he said.

When contacted, A Ravindra, adviser to the CM on urban affairs, said: "Parking space is really necessary in Bangalore. But, where it has to be located, is definitely a matter to be discussed. I was not aware about this project. I am not too sure if an underground parking lot is feasible solution in a park. It depends on many factors.''

Rajeev Chandrasekhar, chairman of NMM committee, clarified that the committee was aware of the project but however ruled out that it was just for the memorial park. "The memorial park needs parking space but this UG parking lot was not on our call as we had planned a temporary arrangement at the existing parking slot at the planetarium area. It's the BBMP's decision to take up this project, considering the parking interests of important offices in surrounding areas,'' he said. He added: "NMM also envisages having a parking capacity created to avoid parking on roads.''

Sudhir Pai, secretary, Krishna apartment owners' association who even approached the Supreme Court for justice in the war memorial case, said: "As a common man I have already raised my voice against the NMM (national military memorial) in the park. What else can a few people do? Siddaiah was the BDA commissioner when the war memorial happened and now as BBMP commissioner, he has announced an underground parking lot at the same park area. Nothing can be done unless people unite and protest. We are not against the projects but against the park being being used for it.''

For the full report in the ToI, click here.

Well, constructing the National Military Memorial inside the park itself had raised a storm, with opinions divided across the citizenry (including on PRAJA - check this) on the pursuit of such an exercise. And, now, out of the blue, comes this idea of a car parking project beneath it. And, the surprising part is nobody seems to support it, except the BBMP Commissioner. But, then, can a Commissioner by himself take decisions such as this, having fairly serious legal implications, particularly when the BBMP suffers a serious 'trust deficit' amongst the citizenry? - check this.

And, what are the elected representatives doing? What about public consultations? When are we going to be ruled the democratic way, rather than be imposed all kinds of things (even if some of them may be good), from behind our backs?

Muralidhar Rao


murali772's picture

A Neta speaks

150 users have liked.

In a twist to the basement car park issue at the Indira Gandhi Musical Fountain Park, urban development minister Suresh Kumar has voiced his displeasure over the BBMP’s project. He told Sunday Times of India that basement car parking had certainly no place inside a park. “I have never heard of such a ‘novel’ project being implemented anywhere. In what sense can a park be a better place to park vehicles? BBMP must look for a different place to build the parking lot, if parking is really an issue on Chowdaiah Road.”
According to Suresh Kumar, this move would set a bad precedent for other parks. “Even if it is an underground facility, the nature of the park will change. It is the only space where natural rainwater harvesting takes place. This purpose will be defeated if parking space is provided. I have no clue as to who is behind such an idea in the BBMP,” he frowned. “The government should advise BBMP to withdraw this proposal and find better space somewhere else.”

However, the proposal for basement parking facility for 250 cars is yet to get clearance from the horticulture department, which manages the park. “Once we give permission to BBMP to build a parking lot here, there are possibilities of this project being replicated in other parks too.” Besides, this will be a violation of the Karnataka Park, Playfields, Open Spaces Act 1984. Already, 50% of the area has been given over to the National Military War Memorial Trust and the park has shrunk. We are examining these issues,” said N Jayaram, director of the horticulture department.

For the report in the ToI, click here.

It is good to hear Mr Suresh Kumar speak up. He is amongst the few neta's in the state with an unblemished record in public service. But, it is said 'a man is known by the company he keeps', and going by that, Mr Suresh Kumar will perhaps need to watch every step he takes, lest he also gets dragged, even if unknowingly, into the black hole of corruption created by his fellow travellers.   

Talking to a person, who admitted to being part of the establishment, I was told that there is a group within BBMP, backed by the local contractor mafia, which goes on 'generating' projects on a regular basis, whether required or not. And, with the Commissioners changing so very often, this group is able to push the projects through, even before an incumbent Commissioner has come to grips with the technicalities of the job. And once that happens, the group is perhaps powerful enough to effect his transfer. Apparently, such goings on can't happen without the backing of the politicos supposedly in charge of the city. And, that's perhaps where a Suresh Kumar now needs to step in, take charge, and say 'saaku', lest as stated already, he also begins to lose the trust of the people.

Muralidhar Rao
murali772's picture

More disapproval

149 users have liked.

CMD of Feedback Consulting, V Ravichandar, pointed out that the metro ought to make for less congestion on city roads, so planners should not now plan for expanding parking spaces; besides, the Vidhana Soudha and surrounding areas already have sufficient parking space. Ravichandar said that the BBMP ought to ensure that all high rise buildings have sufficient parking space. That would greatly reduce the need to plan additional parking lots. Underground parking is also prone to flooding. Ravichander expressed concern that parks and green spaces were being so rampantly taken over for parking lots in the city, at a time when the government ought to be encouraging public transport and dissuading people from using their own cars.

For the full report in the DNA, click here

Well said, Sir!

Muralidhar Rao
murali772's picture

deferred; but, why only that?

140 users have liked.

BBMP has deferred its plan to construct the underground parking complex at the Indira Gandhi musical fountain park near Raj Bhavan. Commissioner Siddaiah said, 'the project will be taken up only if the government approves it. "We have no intention of taking up a project that has already invited so much public wrath. We'll go ahead only after consulting the government," he told TOI.

According to BBMP sources, the tenders were floated exactly a year ago — as records indicate — on December 2, 2009. There isn't much clarity on how they were floated before obtaining permission from the public works department that owns the park land and the horticulture department that maintains it. It wasn't clear why the project was suddenly being taken up. All this came to public notice only after Siddaiah's inspection to the spot on Thursday.

For the full report in the ToI, click here

But, why only defer? Please scrap it, totally. Also, the Commissioner would perhaps do well to conduct an internal enquiry to find out who was responsible for floating the tender, even before necessary permissions had been obtained from the concerned departments, and nail the culprits, lest they cause to land him with eggs on his face, again in future.

Muralidhar Rao comment guidelines

Posting Guidelines apply for comments as well. No foul language, hate mongering or personal attacks. If criticizing third person or an authority, you must be fact based, as constructive as possible, and use gentle words. Avoid going off-topic no matter how nice your comment is. Moderators reserve the right to either edit or simply delete comments that don't meet these guidelines. If you are nice enough to realize you violated the guidelines, please save Moderators some time by editing and fixing yourself. Thanks!

about seo | blog