Following heavy rains on Thursday, a house in Puttenahalli lake slum collapsed, once again bringing to the fore the failure of the authorities in clearing slums from the lake area and relocating residents.

According to the Puttenahalli Neighbourhood Lake Improvement Trust (PNLIT), though the court in March 2019 had directed Principal Secretary of Revenue Department, Deputy Commissioner (Urban) and the Karnataka Slum Development Board to take a decision on relocation of the encroachers, no action has been taken yet.

Usha Rajagopalan, PNLIT chairperson, told The Hindu that in 2010, there were around 40 houses. Over the years, the number had increased to 115.

“The Slum Board had constructed temporary sheds for the slum dwellers at Bettadasanapura. However, the slum dwellers filed a writ petition demanding individual plots. While disposing the writ petition, the court had directed the Principal Secretary, Revenue Department, Deputy Commissioner (Urban), and Slum Board to take a decision to relocate the slum dwellers within 12 weeks. Yet, no action has been taken so far,” she said.

The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) officials told The Hindu that the civic body had transferred ₹70.75 lakh to relocate the slum dwellers. A senior official said that the civic body will not be able to take up lake development unless the slum dwellers are relocated.

“However, the slum board is now claiming that the BBMP should relocate them as it is not a notified slum,” the official said.

N. Manjunath Prasad, Principal Secretary, Revenue Department, said he would look into the issue.

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