Bengaluru: The city’s favourite lung space was desecrated and how! On Sunday evening, as the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium was ready to host the IPL match between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Delhi Daredevils, the Bengaluru traffic police turned law breakers and broke open the locks of Cubbon Park gates without authorisation to allow thousands of spectators to park their vehicles within the park premises.
Green activists in the city are furious and ask why the KSCA authorities, who organise high-turnout cricket matches and earn crores of rupees in revenues, cannot build parking spaces for the visiting cricket fans in the stadium.
“The Cubbon Park gates are meant to be closed at night. The traffic police went ahead and broke open the gate's locks to allow parking space for people coming to watch the Cricket match. I saw 4 wheelers and 2 wheelers parked on the park roads and lawns!" said a furious Umesh Kumar, Advocate and President of Cubbon Park Walker's Assosciation.
“Around 15,000 to 20,000 vehicles were parked near the State Central Library, Band Stand Circle, the road near Bal Bhavan,etc. The vehicles remained there till about 2 am. Why do they have to damage Cubbon Park for a cricket match?” Umesh questioned.
Mahantesh Murgod, Deputy Director, Horticulture department
I suddenly got a call from the traffic police. They said they could not control the public, who would not budge from the gates of the park. We had no choice but to let them park vehicles inside
R. Hithendra, Additional Commissioner of Police
The issue is that the IPL organisers are responsible for arranging parking space for the public. We are responsible for the traffic on the road and can’t have thousands of vehicles parked there. I suppose it was a spur of the moment decision, since the police did not have any other choice