Sharmili Mallick

Cuttack: At first sight, the quarters of Central Electricity Supply Utility (CESU) colony in Cuttack would seem like 'ghost house' and the reason behind it are the dingy rooms, leaking terrace, broken doors and windows, stinking sanitary system and undergrowth in the buildings.

Situated some 200 metres away from Badambadi in the Millennium city, the quarters of the colony allotted mostly to the workers and employees of the CESU is in utter dilapidation and the local residents have blamed government apathy behind the situation.

"Falling of plaster chunks from the terrace has become a regular affair. Once I was sleeping with my kids when a large portion of terrace came crashing down. However, we escaped the mishap. Renting a house outside will be a financial burden on us especially with a meagre salary from the company," Kanan Bhadra, a resident of CESU Colony said.

Another resident, Kanaklata alleged, "Concerned officials visit for inspection of the quarters every year but have never taken any steps for repair of the buildings. I fear one day the structure will collapse leading to loss of many lives."

The CESU employees further alleged that though the Odisha government deducts money from their salaries for maintenance of the quarters and despite repeated complaints for undertaking repair works in the building, the concerned department is yet to take any measures for the same.

A CESU employee, Anil Sarangi, "We have written applications to CESU, OPTCL, OERC Chairman and even visited the Chief Minister's grievance cell. But our complaints have fallen on deaf ears."

On being asked about the dilapidated state of the quarters and measures taken for its repair, Superintending Engineer of CESU, Amiya Kumar Bisoi has asked the employees to leave the quarters and settle somewhere else.

"If the quarters are unsafe for living, the occupants can leave the building and stay outside as CESU pays for house rents. Besides, the concerned department do not have enough money to incurr expenditure for repairing the building," Amiya Kumar told OTV.