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Blatant violations of rule of law

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Urban Development

Now, even as I had just finished publishing the post titled "re-assertion of the rule of law?", pertaining to the government clearing encroachments onto the Kaggadaspura lake (check this), I was hit by this bombshell of a post (full text below) on "SaveKoramangala Yahoo-group", by a prominent member of the community:

This title is intended to provoke attention. This is intended to show the pathetic situation in which the rule of law is in our country. Apologists for the India story often say that we are a nation of laws. Smug self-superiority apart, is that really true ? Not if a few episodes right here in Koramangala are any indication.

Case 1:  The palatial building being built by M/s Marble Centre International (Mr. Rajkumar Ladha) in defiance of a High Court ruling. There is now a lower court stay on any further construction. Mr. Ladha however does not appear to give a damn. He continues construction.

The local BBMP ward office conveniently looks the other way. When pushed to take action, they cite helplessness.

A young lawyer of the BBMP pushes the local AEE here in Ward 151 to take action. For putting pressure to enforce the law, he is threatened. He backs down.

This 'gentleman' is now constructing at breakneck speed a construction which is illegal and for which he has no sanctioned plan !!!

So far:  Law 0.   Law breakers 1

Case 2:  The case of the Shell Petrol Pump. This incidentally is owned and constructed on by Royal Dutch Shell, one of the top companies in the world. Several months ago they commenced construction without any BBMP approval. We stopped it.

In December 2012 we get a letter from the BBMP that they have denied permission to Shell to proceed. We rejoice (too early it now turns out).

In June 2013, Shell takes the BBMP to court for failure to give permission. While the case is still being heard (and no stay given), Shell suddenly comes up with an alleged approval document dated December 2012 and starts building at breakneck speed.

We have been told from Asst Director Town Planning (South) BBMP that the plan on which Shell is building does not exist on their records. The words used were "Bogus", "Fictitious" and "Forged". We were told the local AEE has been told to stop the construction.

Again they look the other way. Construction continues at breakneck speed with an allegedly fictitious plan !

Score update:  Law 0. Law Breakers; 2

Case 3:  Mantri project -- One of the promoters M/s Coremind (a unit of Salarpuria builders - for fuller details, click here) had their Environmental Clearance rejected. That didn't stop them at all. They also continue to build !

The other promoter, M/s Mantri Techzone shows 1 % of the total construction area to get a BWSSB clearance and then flaunts this to get clearances from others saying "I have got a BWSSB NOC for the project !"

After much pressure and after LDA writing to the KIADB, KIADB writes to Mantri asking them to stop until they get an NOC from LDA. No NOC has been obtained.

Has work stopped ? No. Don't hold your breath !!

Score update:  Laws 0; Law Breakers 3


Best Regards, etc.

So, did I speak too early when, in my earlier post I had asked "re-assertion of rule of law?"

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