The Karnataka state government has finally dropped the Rs 1800-crore steel flyover infrastructure project in Bengaluru after 33 months of legal war.
The state government informed the Karnataka High Court its decision to drop the controversial 6.7 km flyover project. The decision came after several protests and complaints against the flyover project by the residents of Bengaluru. Public interest litigation (PIL) was filed against the flyover proposal by Namma Bengaluru Foundation (NBF), claiming that the project was sanctioned without proper clearance.
The NBF had approached the Karnataka HC after the Bengaluru Development Authority (BDA) allegedly denied several of their RTI applications over the steel flyover. The government had bypassed the Bengaluru Metropolitan Planning Committee (BMPC) in sanctioning the project that was proposed by Bangalore Vision Group.
The 6-lane steel flyover was supposed to connect the Hebbal flyover and Basaveshwara Circle as to prevent the traffic congestion at these routes, especially to the airport road. But this proposal was seen as a threat to the city's green belt as the project would destroy nearly 900 trees in the city by eradicating its lung space. The project was expelled by the Congress government in 2017 due to the protests but was reintroduced again in January 2019 after Deputy CM G Parameshwara.
The cabinet had cleared the project on 28 September 2016. The former chief minister Siddaramaiah and then Minister of Bengaluru Development and Town Planning, K J George had defended the steel flyover, saying it was a solution for Bengaluru traffic problems.
Many protests were held against the project including a human chain in 2016 and several studies on how the project will destroy whatever little is left of the garden city due to which SIddaramaiah-led-Congress government had to drop the project in 2017.