Encroachment: Former MLA’s son issued notice

From The Hindu

Bella Vista Belagavi

It was issued as per the direction of Minister Roshan Baig following public complaints

Belagavi City Corporation Commissioner G. Prabhu has issued a notice to Raj Shyam Ghatage, son of former Congress MLA Shyam B. Ghatage, asking him to stop the construction work on a six-storeyed residential apartment coming up on one side of the double road near T.V. Centre.

A similar notice has been issued to Lalchand V. Porwal and others following public complaints during a review meeting conducted by Minister for Urban Development R. Roshan Baig here on August 18.

Mr. Prabhu said at a press conference here on Tuesday that the notice was issued as per the direction of the Minister, on August 19.

Questions were raised on the permission granted by the corporation in 2013-14 for construction of residential buildings on sites which were allegedly on stormwater drains. Mr. Baig, who took the matter seriously in the light of Chief Minister Siddaramaiah’s statement on removing illegal encroachments on stormwater drains, inspected the construction works taken up by Mr. Ghatage and Mr. Porwal and others and directed the corporation commissioner to stop the works with immediate effect.

Mr. Prabhu said that as the Minister had also sought a detailed report from the commissioner of the Belagavi Urban Development Authority (BUDA), both the parties had been directed not to commence construction works till the inquiry into the matter was completed.

According to reliable sources in the BUDA, a conspiracy was hatched by politically influential persons, who ensured that the authority changed the “purpose” of the land where these buildings have come up.

Sources told The Hindu that first the BUDA created records showing that there were open sites on the land in question and allotted it as “alternative land” to some private persons whose land was acquired by the BUDA in some other part of the city. Mr. Ghatage purchased the site from the private persons.

This version gains credence with Mr.Ghatage claiming before the Deputy Commissioner and the media on August 19 that he had records to prove that he had purchased the site from private persons and taken up construction works as per law. But, the question is why and how the BUDA officials changed the purpose of the land which was an open stormwater drain for long.

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4 COMMENTS

  1. BUDA as authority and Mr. Ghatge as a responsible citizen & ex-MLAS should come clean.

    No nonsense should be tolerated or encouraged. If it was a storm water drainage then action should be taken on owners and nothing but demolition should be initiated. BUDA should take ACTION on its officers for changing land use unethically.

  2. There are many complaints pending in Belgaum City Corporation for unauthorized construction, not even one solved after the 2014 demolition at Kanbargi by ex-commissioner Ravi Kumar, but this case will be given special attention at it is between VIPs on both side.

  3. In the recent past rain has been pouring in short span causing massive flooding. This rarely used to take place before. Need to see that public spaces like parks, drains etc are not encroached. Innocent law abiding citizens shall pay the price for the corrupt government officials. The officials who have done should be dismissed from services and all ill-gotten wealth confiscated. But who is going to bell the cat ?

    The government is just doing drama. Do away with stupid land laws.

  4. Land mafia and vested interests are too powerful. Just see how the land use was changed. But for a common man to get even a simple land use change never happens or takes tonnes of cash. Run to Bangalore and pontificate before all offices and officers with suitcases. Land conversion should happen automatically except areas like drains, green belts and some other exceptions.

    Because of of red tape we have so many un-authorised layouts. I am sure a simpler process would have motivated all of them to gladly follow the legal process.

    The last issue is that drains need to be cleaned before every monsoon. Nanawadi and surrounding low lying areas areas have always been flooded in rains for several decades now. Water shall take the natural slope. The officials should simply not blame some builders and take the easy way out. If you blame Bella Vista , then how did they give permission in the first place ?

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