After an elaborate study and search for Tippan, surveyors find that Kelaginakere Byrasandra lake in CV Raman Nagar has indeed been encroached upon; and some of the city’s big names, both in pvt and public sector, could be at fault 

With city lakes shrinking into mires of pollution, sewage and illegal structures, the finger of blame invariably points to the municipal authorities. In the case of Kelaginakere Byrasandra lake in CV Raman Nagar, however, the errant encroachers are some of the who’s who in the IT city. 
From Bagmane Developers and Cognizant Technology Solution to BEML and DRDO, all have played a part in the slow destruction of this water body. Now, after the HC ordered a “100% scientific and accurate resurvey” of the lake, the authorities have finally sprung into life. And according to sources, the resurvey has proved swathes of encroachment by these corporations.

Last month, when government surveyors from the Department of Survey, Settlement and Land Records began a real-time survey of the lake they realised that they had no idea where to start. 

Armed with a Tippan (a document of the earliest measurement of the land parcel) the surveyors began their herculean task. Relief finally arrived in the form of a burial ground at the western end of the lake. Using that as a marker they began to map the original extent of the water body.

The survey was carried out in the presence of 
representatives of the companies based out of offices built on the lake bed and all buildings that were found to have “encroached” had their walls marked with red. The operation that began in early April of this year found that of the 12.21 acre lake, what remains now is just six acres.

Subsequently, on April 26, 37 people/offices/companies including Bagmane Developers Private Limited, Cognizant Technology Solution India Private Limited, Texas Instrumentation, BEML, DRDO, HAL, et al received notices from the department informing them of the survey and asking their representatives to be present.

The notice reads: “As per the direction of the HC in writ petition number 46381/2013, a survey of Byrasandra lake in Varthur village, survey number 112 will be conducted. On April 30, officials will visit the spot to finalise the boundaries. All interested are directed to be present at the spot.”

“The burial ground at the western end of the lake was the primary reference point which is at a 400-metre distance from where the boundaries were drawn, keeping with the original map. All the survey numbers in the area were tallied with the Tippan document and finally, the boundary on survey number 41 matched and ended. The lake was documented: the original area and the existing one,” said one of the company sources, present during the documentation. BM tried to get through Bagmane group’s MD for his response and was asked to send out an e-mail. However, there was no response.


Two reports – one by retired IAS officer V Balasubramaian, and another by A T Ramaswamy who headed the joint legislature committee — named Bagmane Tech Park and other software companies as “encroachers” of parts of Byrasandra lake. In 2013, the district administration launched a drive to reclaim some portions of the lake and subsequently the Bagmane group moved the High Court fearing further demolition of structures and sought a resurvey of the lake. 

In January 2014, the court disposed of the case appointing the commissioner for the Department of Survey, Settlement and Land Records as the court commissioner in the case. The HC directed him to carry out a resurvey and submit a report. The issue did not see any action till last month when Munish Moudgil, commissioner, took up the resurvey. The report will be submitted to the court shortly.

Red markings on the compound wall of several buildings around the lake. The marking comprises arrow, numbers and on some walls, reads “lake ends.” One might mistake this for a land acquisition marking for a road widening project. No, it is the recent outcome of a resurvey carried out to find the alleged encroachments of buildings on Byrasandra lake.