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Bridge builders told to clear bus stop

A woman walks past an encroached bus stop at Patna Junction. Picture by Nagendra Kumar Singh

Patna: The Bihar Urban Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited (Buidco) has requested another state government agency, the Bihar Rajya Pul Nirman Nigam Limited, to clear the Patna Junction bus stand.

The Nigam has dumped its machinery in front of the bus stop, making it inaccessible to commuters. The Telegraph had highlighted encroachment there on Sunday. The bus stop is among the swanky ones Buidco developed in 2014-15 at around Rs 14 crore before giving away their maintenance and advertisement rights to private agencies.

Buidco authorities said on Tuesday they shot off a letter to the Nigam for removal of its machinery from the spot.

"We had taken pictures of the encroached bus stand and showed it to senior department officials," Buidco deputy project director Jitendra Kumar told The Telegraph. "Today, we finally sent letters to the Nigam." He admitted the process was hastened after The Telegraph highlighted the problem.

The Patna Municipal Corporation swung into action on Monday to remove encroachment from over a dozen bus stops, including Kargil Chowk, Bharatiya Nritya Kala Mandir (on Fraser Road), S.K. Memorial Hall and Rajvanshi Nagar.

But on Tuesday, The Telegraph team found vendors and others were back at Fraser Road and in front of the stop outside Patna Medical College and Hospital (PMCH).

Executive officer of PMC's New Capital circle, Shailesh Kumar, expressed helplessness. "Despite repeated requests, we've not been provided with force in the past 10 days," Shailesh said. "Monday's eviction drive was conducted by PMC's own taskforce but the drive would be more successful if cops are involved. Also, the police must ensure squatters do not return after eviction."

Buidco deputy project director Jitendra said they were also struggling to remove squatters from the bus stand at Jagdeo Path. "Some private construction is on there. Sand, stone chips and other construction material is scattered. We are removing it but the private firm is dumping more of it. We are now going to hold one-on-one talks with the firm's officials," Jitendra said.

De-silting work

PMC commissioner Keshav Ranjan Prasad conducted a review meeting of the de-silting drive on Tuesday and directed executive officers to complete it by May 30, giving priority to big drains.

Executive engineers were asked to fix issues related to water-logging on an urgent basis. They were asked to repair damaged pipes and finish other waterlogging works at the earliest, sources said.

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