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Temples demolished in Odisha capital for NH expansion

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Reported by Santosh Jagdev
Bhubaneswar, Nov 7:

Four temples located along the NH-5 near Rasulgarh Square, including the famous Maa Kochilei Temple, have been demolished on Friday in a major eviction drive jointly conducted by Bhubaneswar Development Authority (BDA), Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC), General Administration (GA) Department and National Highway Authority of India (NHAI).

( pic- Biswaranjan Mishra)
( pic- Biswaranjan Mishra)
Other temples demolished during the drive are Maa Tarini Temple, Maa Basanti Durga Temple and Shri Trinath Temple. Besides, the boundary wall of the newly constructed police housing board corporation colony has also been demolished.

The eviction drive was conducted by the concerned departments for removal of unauthorised religious structures to facilitate the expansion of NH-5 following several requests from the NHAI authority.

“As per demarcation of NHAI, the demolition drive was conducted. The NHAI authority had requested us to demolish these temples four months ago. The actual width of the road is 300 feet but it has been constricted to 200 feet due to the presence of these temples. It took us four months to conduct the demolition drive as there was stiff opposition from the local people,” said Deba Prasad Dash, Enforcement Officer of BDA.

Four JCB machines, two cranes and six trucks were put into service to carry out the demolition exercise.

Two platoons of police force, including one section of lady APR force, were deployed on the site under the supervision of an Additional DCP, one zonal ACP and Inspector-in-charge of Mancheswar police station to maintain law and order during the drive.