Residents oppose NHAI expansion, threaten to launch stir
The residents of Rasulgarha area on the outskirts of the capital city today threatened to launch a violent agitation if the National Highway Authority of India(NHAI)did not drop its plan to acquire land on both sides of NH 203 from Rasulgarh Chhak to Palasuni in the name of expansion.
Rasulgarh Jana Manch(RJM) member Sanjay Paikray told reporters here that the NHAI, which conducted a public hearing for the Rasulgarha-Chandikhol NH in 2008, had then stated that no land would be acquired for the expansion of the road.
But though there was no need for acquiring land, the NHAI authorities had recently given an advertisement in local dailies to acquire land on both sides of the road for its expansion.
Mr Shyam Sundar Lenka, one of the affected person and a member of the Manch, said as many as 136 land owners would be affected by the decision of the NHAI.
He said as many as 96 private buildings housing banks, office of insurance companies and many business establishments would have to be completely demolished if the NHAI went ahead with its decision.
Many land owners who have taken huge loan to construct the buldings would suffer a lot as they have not yet cleared their loan amount.
Mr Lenka said as per the information, the NHAI wanted to acquire the land to construct a bus bay. He suggested that the authorities acquire the government land lying unused nearby for the purpose and drop the idea to acquire private land.
The Manch members urged the state government and the Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation to oppose the 'anti-people' decision of the NHAI.They warned the authority of resorting to violent agitation if the NHAI went ahead with its plan despite the opposition.