BDA ignores rules, court order to e-auction sites

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERABangalore, Aug 11, 2013: The Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) has decided to e-auction the intermediate sites, despite its own rules prohibiting it from doing so.

The BDA (Disposal of Corner Sites and Commercial Sites) Rules, 1984, specifically prohibits it from auctioning these sites. In addition, a judgement by the High Court stated the same in April 2009. Further, it was upheld by the Supreme Court, when it was challenged by a petitioner N Jayalakshmi.

The notification issued by BDA on July 27 on e-auctioning of sites, mentions August 20 as the concluding day of the auctioning process.

Around 90 sites in HSR Layout, JP Nagar 8th stage, Kumaraswamy Layout, HAL 3rd Stage, Domlur, BTM Layout, Rajiv Gandhi Nagar, Kengeri and Jnanabharathi are being auctioned.
Of these 90 sites, 52 are intermediate sites. The High Court had clearly stated that applications had to be called for from the general public, but officials in BDA claim they have no knowledge of such a ruling.

“We have to examine this rule. I do not know of any High Court ruling prohibiting us from e-auctioning of the sites. I will examine that order,” said BDA Commissioner T Sham Bhatt.
Bhatt also stated that sites had been e-auctioned earlier and they had been doing this time around too, based on the same.  “But, we will check the High Court order and stop the process if we are flouting the rules,” he added.

The decision of the BDA to go ahead has clearly disappoint many people who have been waiting patiently for the allotment of sites.

The applications have to be adjudged on the basis of seniority with respect to the number of attempts made, age, category and annual income of the applicant.

“There are around six lakh people who have applied for BDA sites and have been waiting for years. But, the BDA is acting like a real estate agent and auctioning sites, with a clear eye on profit and not in the interest of the public,” said RTI activist B M Shivakumar.

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