BENGALURU: The proposed steel flyover along Ballari Road is set to run into its first hurdle. The legal team of Bangalore Golf Course (BGC), which is set to lose a little over 1 acre of land to make way for the flyover, is meeting on Saturday to examine the options before the institution. There’s already consternation among members of the 12-hole BGC, the country’s second-oldest golf club, over being repeatedly made a scapegoat in the name of public projects. Confirming Saturday’s meeting, members TOI spoke to said they’ll oppose the move tooth and nail.
“We already lost six acres of land to road widening. If we have to part with more land along Ballari Road, we’ll lose five holes. We are definitely going to take legal measures to prevent land acquisition,” said BGC member and former secretary Col (Retd) Somsekhar. Built in 1876, the 3,500-member club has 400 to 700 members visiting every day. The lush green golf course premises has already shrunk from 64 acres to 58 acres.
The BDA project report though identifies the BGC land to be acquired as government land, given that the plot has been leased to BGC by the government. The project will need acquiring a total of 4 acres 28.81 guntas of land (19,110 sqmts) along Palace Road, Ballari Road and at Mehkri Circle. About 3 acres and 28 guntas of government land and over one acre of private land have been identified for acquisition for the steel bridge.
Incidentally, none of the BGC-facing bungalows of ministers will be touched for this project.
The biggest private land loser is Bangalore Palace, as the project needs widening the road beyond the Palace Guttahalli bus stop and opposite Tuberculosis Institute and Cauvery Theatre. The plan earmarks a little more than an acre of Palace Ground for acquisition. Balabrooie Guest House, Bengaluru‘s heritage building, is under threat again; 31.33 guntas of land (3171 sqmts) of the property will be acquired for the project. Only a few months ago, the government wanted to covert the guest house into a legislators club. However, a strong citizen movement saved the property from being commercialized.
The BDA has also identified some 32 guntas in the Indian Air Force Training Command headquarters at Mehkri Circle for acquisition, to give way for an up ramp to access the flyover. However, considering the government has never had it easy with defence land. This could be another hurdle difficult to resolve, the steel bridge could find on its way. Given that what is involved is defence land and governments have never had their ways easily in getting defence lands, this sure is one bottleneck the steel bridge may find difficult to resolve. Besides, this IAF facility is the national training command headquarters.
Credits ET Realty