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Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

The expansion work of the National Highway (NH)-55 has been pushed to uncertainty as no one knows when it will get completed.

Dhenkanal MP Mahesh Sahoo on Thursday lodged a complaint against the NH Project Director and contractor in the Town police station over the inordinate delay in completion of the highway extension.

As per reports, the expansion work of NH-55 which is known as the lifeline of Cuttack, Dhenkanal, Angul and Sambalpur, has come to a standstill with construction work showing no signs of completion. 

Locals alleged that the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) is only buying time and extending the deadline of the project from time to time.

Earlier, Dhenkanal MP Sahoo had taken up the matter in Lok Sabha and and held discussions in this regard with Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari. The MP also took part in a road blockade demonstration demanding expedition of the work. However, there has been no headway in this regard so far prompting sharp reactions from the parliamentarian who has termed the development as utterly unfortunate.

“The project is showing no signs of completion and the half-constructed highway has turned into a death trap for commuters. I have lodged a complaint against those who are responsible for it,” said Sahoo.

Meanwhile, a 12-hour bandh is being observed in Dhenkanal in protest against the inordinate delay in the expansion of the Highway.

While District Advocates’ Association has called the bandh, Traders’ Association, Bus and Truck Owners’ Association and various voluntary organisations have extended their support to the bandh.

Vehicular movement has been disrupted along NH55 in Dhenkanal as hundreds of protestors have staged a road blockade at Kamakhya and Bhapur Chhaks. Some of the protestors have also staged a rail blockade near Shyama Charan PH.

As per the activists, the bandh will continue till 6 pm.
 

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