Halt constructions inside park area
The complainant was an advocate by name Umesh, stating that YMCA was putting up some construction without obtaining prior permission as per the park preservation act. During enquiry, we noticed that there were three different notifications redefining boundaries of the park.
One was in 1975, excluding government buildings on Nrupatunga Road. The next in 1983 described Nrupatunga Road as the boundary on the Southwest side. During the enquiry one more notification, issued in 1998, surfaced which also confirmed Southwest boundary as Nrupatunga Road up till K R Circle.
We then called upon the Horticulture and Survey Departments to know the actual boundary. Most of the buildings as per these notifications are government buildings. The matter reached the government and a high-level meeting was held to decide to either exclude or include these buildings to avoid confusion. In January, they replied it was still under consideration. Now I have come to know through the media that the government has decided to exclude government buildings.
Did the first City Survey, conducted in 1975, elaborately explain the properties within and on the periphery of Cubbon park?
Our enquiry revealed that in 1975, the first City Survey was conducted. It disclosed that the survey was conducted on a “as it is and where it is” basis. There was no trace of original titles for these buildings, including government buildings. Accordingly, during the survey the persons as occupants of these properties were entered.
I had directed the Survey Department to hold an enquiry and find a solution. I don’t know if they (survey) will hold an enquiry or not. There are about 31 such buildings, including government and private. Some occupants say the then Mysore Government had granted the property. The concerned departments will have to look into this issue.
In your view, how is this issue linked to the lack of proper documents for the buildings, including government buildings?
The state government does not have an estate department. When I enquired about the fire safety measures in government buildings, this reply was given. The Public Works Department has the data of buildings within its limits. What about buildings owned by various other departments? There is no consolidated data of government buildings in the State. There are some States which have Estate Departments that maintain the records of government properties.
What about the lung space and sanctity of the Cubbon Park with the exclusion of government buildings from the Park limits?
Now, from the earlier area of 245 acres, the park area has reduced to 167 acres, with small buildings still within the park area. In my opinion, Cubbon Park and Lal Bagh are serving as lung spaces in the City. If the people are breathing oxygen it is because of these two parks. In fact, I had suggested the authorities to stop traffic inside the Cubbon Park. Now they have introduced this on Sundays.
Many like-minded groups are interested in development of Cubbon Park. Let the authorities close the park for traffic, and you will see a tranquil atmosphere inside. It is going to attract more birds. Prevent any interference with the parks.
Like preservation of lakes, preservation of parks is equally important. At the same time, the government should restrict any construction inside and even on the periphery of the park.EOM