2 Bowbazar houses to be demolished partly, decision on other buildings after expert opinion: KMRCL

The Kolkata Metro Rail Corporation (KMRCL) on Sunday said that two of the houses that developed cracks in the city’s Bowbazar area due to underground construction work will be demolished partly and expert opinion has been sought from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Roorkee, so as to take a decision on other buildings.

KMRCL managing director (MD) Chandranath Jha said this after a meeting with officials of the Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC), and representatives of the ruling Trinamool Congress over the cracks in buildings and rehabilitation of the residents of Durga Pituri Lane in the area.

The meeting was attended by and affected residents besides Trinamool MPs, MLAs and local councillors.

Biswarup Dey, the local TMC councillor, expressed his dismay saying this was the second such incident. The KMC is getting a survey conducted by an expert team of Jadavpur University, while the KMRCL is getting the same done from experts from IIT Roorkee, it is learnt. Sources said that action will be taken against the affected houses as soon as these two reports are received.

Sudip Bandyopadhyay, Trinamool MP from Kolkata North, said the state government will talk to the Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw, if need be.

Meanwhile, the family members of Trinamool MLA Tapas Roy are panicked over the incident.

Trinamool MLA Tapas Roy, who also lives in the affected area, said, “My family is asking me to leave this house. My wife and daughters are worried. My son stays abroad and he is also under stress these days. I have been here since 2008.”

Like Roy, other residents too are living in fear and many of them are planning to leave the place. The KMRCL has apologised to the residents and set up a “facilitating centre” or grievance cell.

“Our officials will be sitting there for 3-4 hours every day to listen to grievances of the affected residents,” said AK Nandy, general manager (administration, KMRC). This is the second time that buildings here have developed cracks. On August 31, 2019, more than 500 people had to be evacuated when cracks surfaced in several buildings due to tunnel work for the East-West Metro corridor. The affected residents were moved to hotels by the KMRCL.

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