The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Market shift ahead for smooth ride on VIP Road

Flooded with complaints from residents, the local police and civic authorities are planning a major drive to rid VIP Road of encroachments. The North 24-Parganas police and the Rajarhat-Gopalpur Municipality, buoyed by some success in Baguiati, will now take up an eviction drive in Teghoria.

“There are several shops and a market in Teghoria impeding traffic movement. Talks are on with the municipality to remove these shops and shift the market,” said additional superintendent of police Ajay Nand. “The move will make traffic smoother on this vital stretch and also help curb the number of accidents.”

A similar eviction drive was taken up in Baguiati around two months ago, in which some unauthorised structures were demolished and a 50-metre footpath was built. According to Nand, a similar project is being planned at Teghoria.

“Encroachment on VIP Road has grown into a major problem over the years and we receive regular complaints from lots of people. These shops and the market definitely cause traffic snarls,” said Tapas Chatterjee, chairman of Rajarhat-Gopalpur Municipality.“Since it is difficult to take up road-widening projects, we can think of other means. The market can be shifted to some other place,” suggested Chatterjee, adding that the details of the plans would be worked out soon.

According to municipality officials, police have also come up with a proposal to revamp the bus sheds. Some bus sheds with seating arrangements have been constructed in Baguiati, and similar ones are being planned for Teghoria. “These sheds will ensure that people do not stand on the streets while waiting for a bus, adding to the chaos,” Chatterjee said.

The move to shift the market from VIP Road, however, would be easier said than done, officials warned. “For traders, the market is prime location and they will not agree to shift so easily,” said a municipality member.

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