Minister for Bengaluru Development and Town Planning – KJ George – today announced the cancellation of the controversial Bengaluru steel flyover project which was a subject of controversy ever since the project was approved by the State government in September 2016. The steel flyover was planned to connect Chalukya circle to the Hebbal flyover.
The project was in controversy for the two reasons:
→ The environmental damage it’s execution would inflict
→ The corruption allegations surrounding the project
A 6.72 km long and six lane steel flyover was going to built as part of the Rs 1,791 crore project. Going ahead with the project, which was being executed by Larsen and Toubro Ltd (L&T) and Nagarjuna Ltd, with the Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) overseeing it, would have meant chopping down more than 800 trees to make way for the flyover. It is this fact which attracted widespread criticism and protests from the citizens of Bengaluru. Along with the citizens various NGO’s also protested against the project.
Corruptions allegations were also made saying kickbacks from the project were being received by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah’s family and Congress high command. The allegations grew with time and several other congress leaders are said to have forced the government to drop the project as they felt that it was unnecessarily tarnishing the image of the party.
Today, during a media briefing, KJ george said, “We have cancelled the project as we have been forced to prove our sincerity. There are corruption charges being levelled against us when not a single rupee has not been taken as kickback by us.” He further added, “We do not want to take the blame for something we have not done, so we are dropping the project. The steel bridge project had become a pain point for us as the media has been speaking on a daily-basis about corruption in it.”