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Owner of Karnataka Bulldozers feels the heat

Staff Reporter

Bangalore: As the Celebrity Cricket League (CCL) kicked off in the city on Saturday, a group of farmers launched an agitation against Ashok Kheny, Managing Director of Nandi Infrastructure Corridor Enterprises Ltd.(NICE) and owner of the Karnataka Bulldozers team, accusing him of grabbing farmers' land and investing the spoils in a cricket team.

The agitators, led by activist Agni Sridhar, took out a protest march from Freedom Park to M. Chinnaswamy Stadium.The protesters alleged that NICE, which is executing the controversial Bangalore-Mysore expressway project, had acquired excess land for the project and Mr. Kheny was spending money raised from selling farmers' land on the CCL. “We have no objection to land being taken over for infrastructure, but how can we tolerate it when the land is being used to make more profits for Mr. Kheny himself,” said Mr. Sridhar.

Mr. Sridhar, however, clarified that the farmers are not against the CCL but against Mr. Kheny.

“The farmers were given compensation of around Rs. 4 to Rs. 5 lakh for the land. I have four daughters of marriageable age and the compensation they gave us is not enough for any of our living expenses, let alone a marriage,” said Ramesh, who lost his land to the project.

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