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Encroachers a toll on bridge

Jamshedpur, Feb. 4: Within 48 hours of Jharkhand High Court’s order on the under-construction Adityapur toll bridge, both Adityapur Industrial Area Development Authority (Aiada) and East Singhbhum district administration have swung into action.

Aiada, a stakeholder and a nodal agency for the toll bridge, today send a letter to Adityapur Toll Bridge Company Limited (ATBCL) to submit a report on whether the pending work on the toll bridge could be completed within a month.

Jharkhand High Court in its February 2 order has set a March 3 deadline for the completion of the ambitious toll bridge, failing which heavy penalty would be imposed per day on the industry department. The judgment was given on a public interest litigation filed by NGO Jan Kalyan Morcha.

Shivendra Singh, Aiada secretary, said one month was too short to complete construction of approach roads on either side, and unless the quantum of pending work was assessed, they could not go ahead. He admitted that the constraints in completion of the project lay on either end — Adityapur and Kadma — of the bridge.

Singh also claimed to have written to the management of the ATBCL to carry out a meticulous inspection of the under-constructed toll bridge site and let them know if the pending work could be completed within a month.

“When we get their reply, we will forward it to the state industry department for necessary initiative. Though litigation on the stretch at Adityapur was over just five days ago after Jharkhand High Court’s judgment, time is running short,” Singh told The Telegraph, adding the Kadma end was still besieged by encroachers.

East Singhbhum deputy commissioner Himani Pande also said she had written to Aiada for a certified copy of the February 2 high court order. “If the high court has ordered the completion of the toll bridge within a month, I will do it,” she said and added the Kadma encroachments would be removed soon.

The administration had already served a notice to the people with homes on encroached land, she said.

Around 150 houses are on encroached land at Ramjanam Nagar in Kadma, a bottleneck for the toll bridge’s approach road. As encroachers enjoy political support, the administration’s job to clear the area is a tough one.

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