Bhubaneswar, March 19: One of the oldest residential areas in the city lies in a dilapidated condition.
Built in 1988, cracking columns, dark staircases, leaking roofs, clogged drains and overflowing sewage are some of the issues that plague the Bhubaneswar Development Authority (BDA) colony in Chandrasekharpur.
Adding to the residents’ woes are lack amenities such as community hall, neighbourhood market, park and banks. Local residents say despite repeated requests, the authorities are yet to take any step.
“There should be at least a residents’ welfare body to take care of the colony. As the development authority has the original list of the allottees, it should take a lead in this matter. We are ready to cooperate,” said Dharitri Prasad Mishra, 72, president Citizens’ Committee.
The area does not even have a healthcare facility or an ATM. Some of the residents had demanded for a boundary wall around the colony to ensure security.
Umesh Chandra Patnaik, an ex-serviceman, said: “We even made attempts to raise a boundary wall. But the BDA raised objections and threatened demolition. On the other hand, though a lot of land has been encroached in and around the colony, the BDA does nothing about that.”
A senior engineer of BDA said there were no rules to look after the maintenance of a colony after it was handed over to the allottees.
“Only for a year after the colony was built, we had the provisions of maintenance and repair. The residents should form an association and safeguard the colony,” said the engineer.
Another senior officer said a proposal was under consideration to provide a community centre. “Land for park earlier earmarked in the colony was later used for the construction of a temple,” added the officer.
Another BDA engineer said: “The land outside the building plan area within the BDA colony belongs to the general administration department. So, technically even BDA cannot decide on its own to give the residents any concession.”
Injeti Srinivas, principal secretary, housing and urban development department, said: “I have conducted a field visit and also passed an interim order. Everything will be done according to the provisions of law.”
Srinivas is currently hearing the appeal of the residents of the BDA colony.
Sources said the final hearing is likely to take place on April 20. “As the matter is under the consideration of the appellate body, things will become clear once the order is out,” said an official of the housing and urban development department.