RLDA plans residential development on railway land in Agra, greens sore - Hindustan Times
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RLDA plans residential development on railway land in Agra, greens sore

Jul 21, 2023 12:47 AM IST

River Connect, an organisation raising environmental issues in Agra, has been demanding that the land area be developed as green patch with amusement park to allow local denizen an opportunity to be in close contact with nature.

Agra The Rail Land Development Authority (RLDA), a statutory authority of the Indian Railways, has invited bids for residential development on railway land measuring 90,304 square metres in Belanganj, a locality in the heart of the Taj city.

An RLDA press statement said From the iconic Taj Mahal to the majestic Agra Fort, the enchanting Belanganj locality served as a gateway to India’s most revered landmarks. (For representation)
An RLDA press statement said From the iconic Taj Mahal to the majestic Agra Fort, the enchanting Belanganj locality served as a gateway to India’s most revered landmarks. (For representation)

The press statement issued on behalf of Rail Land Development Authority (RLDA) informed that the proposed land parcel would be leased out for 99 years.

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“The reserved price of the land is 213.80 crore. The online pre-bid meeting was held on June 19. Many local and national level developers attended the meeting and their queries were answered. The last date of submission of e-bid is August 3, “ said the press statement.

Vice chairman, RLDA Ved Parkash Dudeja said, “In the heart of Agralies Belanganj, steeped in history and brimming with cultural treasures. Situated along the bank of the majestic Yamuna river, Belanganj is a testament to architectural brilliance, with its stunning monuments and bustling markets.”

“From the iconic Taj Mahal to the majestic Agra Fort, this enchanting locality serves as a gateway to India’s most revered landmarks. Yet, it is the vibrant bazaars, offering traditional crafts, exquisite textiles and mouthwatering street food, that truly capture the essence of Belanganj,” said the statement.

“Rail Land Development Authority (RLDA) is a statutory authority under the Ministry of Railways for the development of railway land. It has four key mandates as a part of its development plan, namely leasing commercial sites, colony redevelopment, station redevelopment, and multi-functional complexes.”

“During the current financial year, RLDA has leased out various sites at Waltax Road (Chennai), Ajmer (Rajasthan), Bijwasan (Delhi), Kharagpur and Solapur (Maharashtra) for a cumulative lease premium of Rs. 1622 crore, including railway assets valuing approx. of Rs. 7.54 crore to be developed in Kharagpur Railway Colony,” said the official press statement.

However, there are voices of dissent too. River Connect, an organisation raising environmental issues in Agra, has been demanding that the land area be developed as green patch with amusement park to allow local denizen an opportunity to be in close contact with nature.

“The area is already very congested and roads choked with traffic. The cities are turning into concrete jungle and as such, this location, once a godowm for the railways that changed as container depot, can be better used,” said Brij Khandelwal from ‘River Connect’.

This land parcel was more popular as ‘Malgodam’ (godown for goods) in Agra and had been the property of the railways.

Later, the area became defunct and land was lying unused for years till it was converted into a dry port with facility for loading and loading of containers carried by railways. But this too did not last long, In future, the land parcel might see new residential development.

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