Chandrayaan-I left all cheerful but Byalalu villagers high and dry

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Byalalu (Bangalore), Oct.27 : The launch of India's maiden moon mission Chandrayaan-I from Sriharikota recently cheered all across India, except the residents of Byalalu and Chandrappa Circle villages near Bangalore where Deep Space Network is tracking the Chandrayaan - 1 satellite with the help of two large antennae.

Villagers here lament that the state government acquired their land at a very low rate for the project a few years ago. But today they feel cheated in comparison to those who can currently sell off their land at many times higher than that prices.

"I sold my two-and-a-half acres of land for Rs. 450,000 three years ago, now I feel cheated, as the land price has increased to more than Rs 60,00,000 per acre. The money I received then has been spent on marriages of my daughters, clearing the pending loan and such other reasons," said Muniyappa, a villager.

Villager had sold off their land three years ago at a price which is 1/12th of the prevailing prices for the same piece of land. The land prices have broken roof. It is evident from the fact that the land available at Rs. 400,000 per acre only three years ago is today between Rs. 30,00,000 to 60,00,000 (three to six million rupees).

"We were told that we could get lots of money and we thought the money would help us to improve living standard. But now we know that those who did not sell their land at that point of time are many times richer than us," said Byregowda, a villager.

Villagers, who didn't have to sell off their piece of land for the government's requirements for the project, can today sell off their land at sky-rocketed prices. Though a petition asking for higher rates for the land was filed in the Karnataka High Court two-and-a-half years ago, it is yet to be admitted.

According to officials, a survey was conducted over 12 places and decided on the saucer-shaped Byalalu since it offers security from the electro-magnetic and radio waves besides from the sounds and lights of Bangalore.

It was found the best location to contain electromagnetic noise that can interfere with signals from deep space. By Sughosh Nikhile

ANI

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