To meet the deadline of completing the four-laning of Kalka – Solan stretch of the Shimla Chandigarh highway by end of 2017, National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) has served notices for removal of 180 structures that are encroaching upon the road alignment.
Owners of the these structures, which are said to be illegally occupying public lands, have been asked to vacate and demolish them in a week’s time otherwise they would be flattened by bulldozers.
Such a diktat has also been issued to other business owners who have their properties in the area marked for the four-laning project. If the concerned parties do not comply with this order, their properties too would be razed to the ground with the help of bulldozers.
The NHAI notices have jolted many business owners in Dharampur, where a lot of structures are marked for being removed to get passed a crowded township on the highway.
Project director Satish Kaul confirmed that notices had been served on owners of 80 illegal structures. “NHAI would have to demolish all these structures, once the notice period gets over, said Kaul. For the remaining 100 illegal occupants the notice period is in its last stage and they too would be evicted soon, he added.
The entire market of Dharampur, will need to be razed for the purpose of four laning and this has created panic among owners of buildings and business there.
To register their protest and seek a rehabilitation package, the business owners have asked the Panchayat Pradhan of Dharampur Om Prakash Panwar to secure an early sanction for the newly proposed MES Shopping Yard Complex. They want that the designated land for the proposed complex be transferred to the Government of Himachal. Presently, the MES Yard is encroached upon by illegal users. The business owners have been asking the administration to get the project started for over an year but the administration has still to take a decision.
Those facing eviction from their houses, business premises also decided to lodge their protest before Rakesh Kanwar, the district magistrate of Solan. They also decided that the eviction notices served on them by NHAI would be presented to chief minister Virbhadra Singh at the earliest.