Engineers from the Kolkata Metro Rail Corporation (KMRC), implementing agency of East-West Metro, have started monitoring the condition of crack-riddled buildings and those near them in the subsidence-hit zone of Bowbazar, officials of the agency said.
The engineers are also trying to ascertain whether efforts to contain any further seepage of underground water were paying off.
As part of the periodic evaluation, the officials said, engineers of the ITD-ITD Cementation — the project’s contractor — are being asked to explain the effect of the ongoing grouting exercise around a shaft, located some 30m under the surface, and specify whether new cracks are appearing in buildings in the subsidence-zone.
“The impact of efforts to contain any further seepage of underground water would determine the future of the project,” an engineer said.
A part of the project connecting Sealdah and Sector V took off on Thursday. Once complete, the East-West Metro corridor will span 16.5km and connect Sector V with Howrah Maidan. Bowbazar will be a key junction on the route.
“We don’t want to hurry with tunnelling in Bowbazar,” N.C. Karmali, director (projects) of KMRC, told The Telegraph.
“We are not even looking at setting any dates by which we would like to resume the tunnelling work in Bowbazar. The work of grouting is being monitored and we want to abide by the standard protocols.”
A subsidence in Bowbazar during tunnelling work on May 11 had resulted in cracks in at least nine houses in Durga Pituri Lane, leading to displacement of 160 people.
With the affected families lodged in hotels and Durga Pituri Lane lying almost deserted, residents of Bowbazar are accusing the Metro authorities of negligence with tunnelling work, resulting in second subsidence in the area after 2019.
“We have asked the contractor to submit regular reports on the condition of the ground, whether there has been any fresh case of subsidence and cracks,” said a KMRC official.