Mysuru environmentalists will file a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) to block the construction of a building inside a park in alleged violation of the law.
The building is being constructed by the Mysuru City Corporation (MCC) and stands in Jayanagar Park. Activists say this is an indication of flagrant violation of the Parks, Playgrounds and Open Spaces of Karnataka (Preservation and Regulation) Act 1985 that no construction may be permitted in a park that covers less than 2.5 hectares. Controversy has simmered over its construction ever since the civil works came to light and environmentalists flagged it as being in violation of the law in addition to eating away at the city’s lung space.
According to MCC officials, some of the public had been seeking amenities and as a result, a senior center was being built inside the park for their use. The authorities claimed that 5% of the area of the park can be used for civil works according to the law and that the current construction works do not respect this limit.
Bhamy V. Shenoy, founding chairman of Mysore Grahakara Parishat, said that according to the law, no construction can be allowed if the area of the park is less than 5 acres and the Jayanagar park occupies an area much less than that. “Even if it was more than 5 acres, the law provides for the construction of guard quarters or the creation of storage spaces for the maintenance of the park, etc,” he added.
A local resident who is also a civil engineer measured the area of the park and the ongoing construction and it would have occupied at least 30% of the area of the park, Mr Shenoy said.
He also cited the Karnataka High Court Judgment with regards to construction developments by the BBMP and pointed out that no construction can be permitted inside a park and hence wished that the MCC not only stops the works, but cleans it of the building and redevelops. the park.
“Each time they come up with the same excuse that it’s for the benefit of the citizens or that the construction is less than 5% of the area of the park,” Mr Shenoy said.
Mysuru has a history of such constructions in areas designated as a park, which has resulted in court battles in the past. A public library was built inside People’s Park, throwing all standards to the winds. But the construction of a water reservoir was prevented on a private development within the boundaries of the MCC, while a similar construction inside Cheluvamba Park was also blocked.