More than 70 activists who participated in a peaceful march opposing the construction of a flyover along Sankey Lake in Bengaluru have been booked by the authorities. The case was registered at the Sadashivanagar Police station in the city. The Karnataka government had recently abandoned the flyover project following widespread opposition from the public.
The citizens have criticized the Karnataka government for their actions, calling it an attempt to stifle the voices of the people. The activists were protesting to protect the interests of the areas under threat due to the flyover project.
Joseph Hoover, an environmentalist, condemned the government’s attitude, saying, “The United conservation movement condemns this draconian attitude of the Karnataka government, and it needs to understand that it has filed FIR against innocent people. This government doesn’t have the guts to take action against the contractor who destroyed the Hosakerehalli Lake, but takes the initiative to threaten people who were only trying to do their duty.”
Former MP Rajeev Gowda, who was also booked by the police, expressed outrage at the charges. “It is outrageous what MLA Ashwath Narayan is trying to do. He’s trying to misuse the power of the government and the police to threaten citizens and activists….All we did as concerned citizens was march on the side of the road, and these charges are preposterous. They are trying to intimidate us,” he said.
The flyover project proposed by the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) would have involved constructing a flyover and ramps on Sankey Road between Malleshwaram 18th Cross and Cauvery Junction on Bellary Road. Activists and citizens of Bengaluru opposed the project, citing its serious impact on the biodiversity of the region.