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The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Karnataka spurs cop housing
- Structures based on pre-fabricated material inspires state

Ranchi, Dec. 15: Jharkhand is eager to take a leaf out of Karnataka’s book and utilise pre-fabricated materials to provide sturdy temporary camps, police outposts, barracks and related infrastructure for the troops deployed in Naxalite-hit areas of the state.

Additional director-general of police V.H. Deshmukh, also the managing director of Jharkhand Police Housing Corporation Limited (JPHCL), today left for Bangalore to understand the technical know-how of the Karnataka model that excels in setting up earthquake-proof and fire-resistant structures in short notice.

“The Karnataka State Police Housing Corporation Limited (KSPHCL) has tied up with an Australian company, which specialises in construction of buildings using pre-fabricated materials (steel, plastic, et al). Some structures have been built there within 17 days,” Deshmukh told The Telegraph.

The additional DGP, who will meet officials of the Karnataka housing body, said that replicating the model would be a useful move in Jharkhand, especially in remote areas, where “it is difficult for contractors to build structures”.

JPHCL has often faced challenges in building establishments in rural areas with questions raised by the state police brass about the quality of cement-concrete structures in the hinterland.

The state government has received central funds to the tune of Rs 2 crore each for setting up 75 police stations this fiscal. During his visit to the state last month, home minister P. Chidambaram had raised concern over the slow progress of work on the stations.

Factors like unavailability of land, delays in selection of bidders and most importantly security have slowed down construction of nearly 200 police stations and outposts, some of which have been dragged on for a couple of years.

According to senior police officers, if the housing corporation adopts the technology being implemented in Karnataka, contractors or agencies will be able to complete work within a month.

An engineer associated with JSPHCL said that the construction of an average building took at least one and a half years to complete. But, he added, work on many structures at present were being stretched for two to three years.

Deshmukh added that corporation would study the Karnataka example before taking a final call. “If we execute the plan in the near future, we will follow it not only in Naxalite-hit rural areas but also for creating police establishments in urban centres too,” he said.

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