The Truth About BDA Layouts Exposed
The true story reads like a film plot, certainly like a farfetched story. The Bangalore BDA encroachments going on as far back as 1980 represent tons of illegalities. The real estate sector is proverbially full of fraud, lies and misrepresentations. Yet how is it that Bangalore development Authority let so much of illegality happen under its nose?
Is it the work of corrupt officers who looked the other way? More than 66,000 illegal homes have been built upon BDA layouts all across the city. One would think of demolitions as the solution. Yet that seems to be an extreme step. Besides, they have been staying in such illegal homes, perhaps for 25 to 30 years! The greater wonder then that no action was taken so long. Some illegal homes were built as far back as 1980.
Some demolitions carried out recently brought a lot of public anger against state authorities. The public blames the state government for not taking action so long. The culprits must have absconded with bribe money. While public feelings remain with those who spent life earnings to acquire land and build houses illegally, it is the fault of BDA that no action was taken so long.
According to situations, some win the war and others lose. Now that BBMP elections are approaching, the state government has decided to regularize the more than 66,000 homes. That may come as a boon for the guilty but details have not been worked out yet.
The rationale is that the state government has been a loser all along with no income from these properties. If regularized, they would begin to generate revenues too. Will that mean a penalty being imposed? Charging guidance value or market price? Nobody knows the answers yet.
Just imagine the enormity of illegal homes. As much as 3,699 acres of BDA land is occupied by illegal houses. The value of that land touches Rs. 6000 crores. The chief minister says that faced with the options of demolition or regularisation, the matter has been referred to the law department for clarification.
Now the situation seems to be getting under control with knowledge of the exact details. In fact no BDA layouts came into existence since 2004. The only one was Kempegowda Layout and such illegality does not exist there. The future hopefully will be better than the past regarding BDA layouts.
A thousand irregularities in terms of real estate dealings exist as major headaches for the state government. The peripheral areas of Bangalore nowadays witness tremendous real estate development and perhaps much of it is illegal. It is hoped that the state government would continue to weed out the illegal elements in such dealings. Fraud and bribery must end or at least be controlled to avoid innocent victims.
BDA seems to be waking up before it is too late. The many illegal layouts on lake beds are hot disputes too. Now that they have decided upon fencing a large number of lakes, a better future may be anticipated.