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Bus, be at home but behave
Terminus takes on squatter hurdle

If the capital’s civic guardian has its way, two important landmarks — the mucky Birsa Munda Bus Stand at Khadgarha and run-down Jaipal Singh Stadium at Kutchery Chowk — will soon boast renovated and refurbished look.

Ranchi Municipal Corporation (RMC), which has already selected a makeover agency for the interstate terminus, will launch and round up a swift anti-encroachment drive at Khadgarha on Monday to pave the way for the multi-crore project. And, three days down the line, on June 20, governor Syed Ahmed will lay the foundation stone for the stadium’s much-awaited revamp.

According to RMC public relations officer Naresh Sinha, squatters have occupied a chunk of the 18-acre bus stand. As a result, despite the foundation stone being laid by the governor for its revamp a few days ago, the Ranchi-based agency has not been able to begin work.

While the urban homeless have turned the bus premises into their shelter, several tea stalls and eateries have mushroomed here and there.

“Every kind of encroachment will be removed tomorrow so that construction agency RK Agarwal Infratech can begin work simultaneously,” Sinha promised.

Khadgarha is one of the state’s main terminuses from where over 300 buses leave for Jamshedpur, Dhanbad, Bokaro and Chaibasa in Jharkhand, Calcutta and Durgapur in Bengal, Patna, Gaya and Muzaffarpur in Bihar and Bhubaneswar in Odisha.

The urban development department has earmarked Rs 9.74 crore for its makeover.

According to the detailed project report prepared by the RMC with help from private architects, the bus stand will boast an administrative building, shops, a restaurant, a cafeteria, restrooms and parking amenities for a few hundred buses.

The parking area and driveway for buses will be concretised so that they can withstand the monsoon onslaught. The terminus will also be equipped with a rainwater harvesting system and an underground water tank.

Sinha also confirmed that development of the nine-acre Jaipal Singh Stadium would be underway soon.

“The governor has given time on June 20 to lay the foundation stone for the stadium’s makeover. He will inaugurate two new parks (one behind Sido-Kanhu Park near Morabadi and the other in Harmu Sector VII) developed by the RMC on the same day,” the public relations officer said.

The RMC has given the work order for the stadium to city-based Yashawi Infrastructure Private Limited and allocated a corpus of Rs 3.28 crore for the project.

Built in 1978, the stadium is named after Jaipal Singh Munda who captained the Indian field hockey team to clinch gold in the 1928 Summer Olympics in Amsterdam.

The historical landmark, which has suffered decades of neglect, is, finally, looking up to a fresh lease of life. According to plan, the stadium will have new courts for lawn tennis, badminton, volleyball and basketball as well as a gym and joggers’ path. Apart from these, galleries will be constructed and the damaged boundary wall and administrative building repaired.

When do you think the new bus stand will be ready?

Tell ttkhand@abpmail.com