Residents hold up demolition drive in Odisha capital for hours

Reported by Santosh Jagdev
Bhubaneswar, Mar 3:

The drive to remove unauthorized structures in Old Town area here jointly undertaken by Bhubaneswar Development Authority (BDA), Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) and the General Administration (GA) department of the Odisha government today had to be halted for over two hours as about 50 to 60 persons, including women, opposed the move tooth and nail.

Pic: Biswaranjan Mishra
Pic: Biswaranjan Mishra

The agitators demonstrated in front of the excavator while some of them blocked the main road leading towards Lingaraj Temple from Garage Square road for about two and half hours causing serious problem to commuters.

“They opposed the removal of encroachment on Government road land from Garage Square to Basistha Nagar in Old Town area. The  demolition could not be competed due to the protest today,” said Liaisoning Officer of BDA Subhransu Sekhar Mohanty

The situation was brought under control and the road was cleared after the intervention of ACP Anil Kumar Patra and IIC of Lingaraj police station Janardhan Padhi.

Two platoons of police forces were deployed at the site to maintain law and order during the demolition drive.

The drive was conducted today acting on the requisition made by Executive Engineer of Prachi Division in the city vide his letter no. -6311 dated November 27 last year.

About 60 to 70 thatched houses were removed by the joint squad with the help of two excavators used for the eviction drive.

The demolition drive was supervised by Enforcement Officer-I of BDA Debaprasad Dash in the presence of other demolition squad of BDA, BMC and GA.

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