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War of words between JD(S) and promoter of expressway project continues

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Party says Nandi Infrastructure proposal only a real estate proposition

Bangalore , June 18

An advertisement released by the ruling Janata Dal (S) in local newspapers on Sunday added to the war of words between the Government and the promoters of the controversial Bangalore-Mysore Infrastructure Corridor project (BMICP)

The public interest advertisement reiterated the party's charge that the promoter's (Nandi Infrastructure Corridor Enterprises Ltd) acquisition of land around Bangalore was purely a real-estate proposition. It also spoke in favour of taking over the project and auctioning the land allotted for the expressway to generate huge public funds for infrastructure.

`Serious repercussions'

NICE, for its part, said any attempt by the Government to cancel its 1997 Framework Agreement with NICE would have serious repercussions, as the Supreme Court and the High Court had upheld the Framework Agreement.

"All the allegations have been eloquently answered by the Supreme Court's verdict" of April 2006, a spokesman said. NICE would consider all legal options in the interest of the project, he said

The advertisement comes on the eve of the month-long legislature session starting on Monday.

The JD(S), the lead partner in Karnataka's coalition government, has been speaking of a new Bill to nullify the BMICP project - the Karnataka Streamlining of Infrastructure Development and Land Utilisation Bill, 2006.

According to NICE, the Bill which aims to dissolve the Bangalore BMICP Area Planning Authority, the super-regulatory body with jurisdiction over some 700 sq km of the expressway area, would set off a confrontation between the legislature and the judiciary in the light of the apex court verdict directing the State to facilitate the project as per the agreement.

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