Locals claim that the encroachers are hindering developmental activities and causing environmental degradation
The encroachments around Bellandur, Mahadevapura, and Whitefield have been creating problems for the residents, as the constant complaints made to the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) are going unheard. According to a public document on the BBMP’s website, 326 acres of land have been encroached and 356 houses are set up around the city.
Abhijeet, the association member of a society in Bellandur, said that the number of illegal encroachments have been increasing in the area and the BBMP has not been doing anything about it. A resident of Whitefield, who had been a victim said that the people who encroached his land even went to the extent of building a compound wall around it. He also said that in order to get rid of them, he had to pay off the land mafias, when the BBMP failed to do anything.
Recently, the demolition drive launched by the BBMP claimed to have cleared 400 illegal hutments but talking to Ramesh, a security guard, The Softcopy newspaper found out that the land that he has been living on was not encroached and the BBMP officials have wrongly destroyed his hutment. Ramesh said that the demolition was done without verifying the ownership of the land.
Kuruvila, a town planner, said that the problem of illegal encroachment has been increasing in the city of Bangalore, especially around the lake beds. He added that because of these encroachments the natural system of the valley is being destroyed and is hindering the process of urban planning.