The Durga Puja pandal coming up on Gandhi Maidan that will soon see a makeover. The plan envisages clearing encroachments and preventing illegal parking (below) along the boundary wall too. Pictures by Bhola Prasad
East Singhbhum district administration on Monday gave its nod to a Mango Notified Area Committee (MNAC) proposal of beautifying Gandhi Maidan, a five-decade-old landmark that is a beehive of activity.
Besides housing the office of the Mango committee, the grounds also have a state-run high school. It is used round the year for public rallies and also hosts a Durga Puja.
As a part of the Rs 20-lakh beautification plan, encroachments outside the maidan boundaries will be removed. Then, the 3-acre green lung will be beautified by laying a grass turf and planting flowering plants.
Currently, nearly 50 vendors and makeshift shops dot both sides of the ground’s entrance. Besides congesting the approach road, the shops dump their garbage inside the maidan.
“There have been regular complaints from local residents about problems caused by encroachments. The shopkeepers throw garbage both inside and outside the maidan, causing inconvenience for students of the local school and people visiting MNAC office. Moreover, women visiting the civic office face harassment from youths standing near the shops,” said MNAC special officer Sushil Kumar.
The beautification plan, the tender process of which is set to begin soon, will also see construction of a slope gradient to prevent accumulation of rainwater and installation of grills to prevent cattle from munching on saplings.
While the slope gradient along the entire stretch of the front wall will be six feet wide, four-feet-high grills will be installed to prevent cattle from entering the maidan.
Kumar said the tender process would be completed by Durga Puja and work will commence mid-October.
“The agency executing the plan will have to complete the work within three months. We hope residents will get respite from the problems by January 2014,” he added.
Kaushik Sinha, a resident of Daiguttu in Mango lauded the move but added it was a much-delayed step.
“The MNAC office was shifted to Gandhi Maidan more than a year ago. They should have taken steps to beautify this landmark site much earlier. However, better late than never,” he added.