Police try to ward off JVM workers protesting in front of the district collectorate in Jamshedpur on Saturday. (Bhola Prasad)
Jamshedpur, Aug. 23: Around 500 JVM workers today blocked the main gate of the district collectorate to protest against delay in constructing flyovers to streamline traffic movement and reduce accidents on the city roads.
The JVM workers and supporters started gathering near Jain Bhavan in Sakchi from early in the morning and then marched towards the district collectorate as a part of their “maha-dharna” to protest against the rising mishaps.
The hour-long agitation that began around 11am caused massive traffic snarls in the area, forcing police to divert the vehicles through other roads.
The Subernarekha Link Road that passes through the district collectorate and connects Sakchi with Mango remained paralysed for a few hours even after the agitation ended.
A delegation of JVM leaders submitted a memorandum to East Singhbhum additional district magistrate (law & order), B. K. Munda, threatening to prevent heavy vehicles from entering the city limits if the administration failed to take any step in this regard within 15 days.
JVM central secretary Abhay Singh said that the city had witnessed more than 900 accidents in the past five years and heavy vehicles had been culprits in most of the cases.
“The number of heavy vehicles using the city roads has increased by more than 50 per cent in the last few years. However, the road dimensions have not increased much. This is leading to traffic congestion and mishaps,” he said.
Singh added that the state government had been dragging feet on construction of flyovers under the Eastern Corridor project for the last two years.
“The construction of Eastern Corridor will keep heavy vehicles away from the city arteries. We will block the entry of heavy vehicles to the city if no action is taken by the administration,” said Singh.
The Rs 1350-crore Eastern Corridor project will link the NH-33 to Tatanagar Station through arterial roads, flyovers and a third bridge over the Subernarekha river and help decongest the city roads.
The project, which was expected to be complete within two years after its commencement, is still caught up in bureaucratic hurdles.
ADM Munda said that the any decision to start work on the Eastern Corridor would be taken by the state government and the local administration could do little about it.
“We have got no information from the government on this issue so far,” he added said.