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Regular-article-logo Tuesday, 28 May 2024

Blame game over demolition debris

The demolition drive left tonnes of debris along the tracks, inconveniencing commuters

Kumud Jenamani Jamshedpur Published 09.03.19, 07:35 PM
Rubble piles up near the railway overbridge project site at Jugsalai in Jamshedpur on Saturday.

Rubble piles up near the railway overbridge project site at Jugsalai in Jamshedpur on Saturday. (Animesh Sengupta)

Mounds of debris along the tracks near Jugsalai railway crossing after a demolition drive to pave the way for an overbridge has turned into a nightmare for commuters as the authorities concerned are busy passing the buck.

Tatanagar railway’s engineering division along with the Railway Protection Force (RPF) had on March 1 started a demolition drive against illegal structures set up along the tracks and demolished as many as 140 buildings by Wednesday (March 6).

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The demolition drive, which was conducted in a 500-metre stretch from Jugsalai railway crossing towards Adityapur, left tonnes of debris along the tracks, inconveniencing commuters.

So far, the railways have cleared encroachment from 42,000 square metre area for the overbridge project.

However, the Tatanagar railway authorities and the state road construction department have started a blame game over who is responsible for removing the rubble.

The road construction department, which is building the approach roads to the overbridge, claims that it has asked the railways to clear the debris. The railway authorities said they would only keep the request once the department paid the money for the rail land that the road department had bought to construct the approach roads.

“Ever since the demolition drive was conducted, it has become difficult for us to walk or drive on that stretch as the road is filled with debris. The railways should clear the debris as soon as possible,” Mustaque Ahmed, a resident of Jugsalai, told this correspondent.

Several other residents also expressed their resentment against the railways for letting the debris lie there even after a week after the completion of the anti-encroachment drive.

The overbridge to be set up jointly by the road construction department and the railways at a cost of Rs 23 crore is aimed at easing traffic movement between densely-populated Jugsalai and the rest of the city.

Executive engineer of road construction department’s Jamshedpur division, N. Sahay, said they had requested the railways to remove the debris by engaging its contractors.

“We will start the construction of approach roads to the overbridge and want the site clear of any encroachment, including the debris. We have promised to pay the money for the railway land as soon as we get funds from the department,” Sahay told The Telegraph.

However, assistant engineer (Tatanagar) Anoop Saxena said they would pay heed to any request only after getting the money.

“The road construction department has to give the railway Rs 13 crore. Unless we get the amount, we cannot engage any agency to clear the demolition spot,” Saxena said.

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