No end to encroachment menace

Published on Mar 25, 2006 12:12 AM IST

DO THE Nagar Nigam, Allahabad Development Authority and district administration officials really have any concrete policy against roadside encroachments in the city?

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HT Image
None | ByPANKAJ Mishra, Allahabad

DO THE Nagar Nigam, Allahabad Development Authority and district administration officials really have any concrete policy against roadside encroachments in the city?

Unfortunately, they have no such plan so far, as a result illegal grabbing of roadside land and parks is continuing unabated in every part of the city.

Now at a time when much hype is being created by the Nagar Nigam administration to develop the city on pattern of Hyderabad as part of the 'National Urban Renewal Mission (NURM) programme of the Union Government to reform the cities, it remains silent on how to get vacated the city roads from clutches of illegal occupants.

In fact, without carrying out a massive anti-encroachment drive, the NURM would have no meaning at all.

In the absence of a firm policy against encroachments, the NN and ADA have completely failed to get a permanent relief. They carry out anti-encroachment drives simply in compliance to the Allahabad High Court order.

One can witnesses the example the MG Marg and Kamla Nehru Marg in Civil Lines area the problem exists despite several rounds of drive carried out by the NN and ADA. Though the NN and ADA claim to have removed illegal occupants, they have again encroached the same places.

Both sides of Mahatma Gandhi Marg , Sardar Patel Marg and now Nawab Yusuf Marg have been covered by multi-storeyed shopping complex and big builders. If encroachment from these roads is not removed soon, Civil Lines area may face water-logging problem in the coming monsoon.

In another eye-opener case, nearly three dozen shops illegally constructed between MNNIT, Railway crossing and UPTRON crossing in Shivkuti and Govindpur area were razed to ground by Nagar Nigam and Allahabad Development Authority in a joint drive four years back but the debris have not been removed till date. According to the NN rules, it is the primary duty of Nagar Nigam to remove the debris within a week after demolition. The NN authorities said there was status quo order by the court in the case but at same time several temporary new shops have come up during the past two years and the officials concerned are very much in the know of the things.

Sources said these shops were constructed illegally on the roadside in connivance with NN and ADA staff. An inquiry in this case may expose several startling facts about the increasing encroachment menace in the city.

Interestingly, thousands of residents belonging to Govindpur, Shivkuti, Teliyarganj, MNNIT, AU colonies, Kailashpuri colony and tourists pass through this main road daily and face several inconveniences due to garbage.

Similarly, both sides of the roads from Katra Subzimandi to Mazar, Bank Road to Kutchery, Motilal Nehru Road, Lal Bahadur Shastri Marg, Behraina, PD Tandon Park, Rambagh, Kydganj , Salori, Thornhill Road , Jawaharlal Nehru road and others can be seen occupied illegally.

NN and ADA officials, however, said that political intervention was the biggest hurdle in carrying out anti-encroachment drive in the city.

Meanwhile, the demand for a high-level probe into the role of civic officers in illegal constructions has been raised. Kamlesh Singh and Raju  Shukla, both outgoing corporators, demanded that before implementing the NURM it was a must to identify the encroached roadsides in the city first and then a massive drive should be launched to clear roadsides.

The main thrust of the NRUM will be on major infrastructure projects relating to road network, water supply, sanitation, sewage, solid waste management, road network, transport and road development of inner old city area with a view to upgrading infrastructure therein, shifting industrial and commercial establishments to conforming areas, etc.

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