‘Jal Satyagraha’ in Cuttack opposing encroachment on river bed

Cuttack: Protesting encroachment on the mouth of Kathajodi River, members of the Kathajodi and Kuakhai Nadi Surakshya Committee staged a ‘jal satyagraha’ today.

As per allegations, some realtors have constructed boundary walls on the river mouth and plotting the area for sale affecting release of flood water in Kathajodi and Kuakhai rivers. The committee members also stated that despite lodging complaints several times before the district administration, no concrete steps for eviction of encroachment have been taken.

“As per the Vision-30 map of the Cuttack Development Authority (CDA), the encroached area is river bed and its nearby areas are environment sensitive. Even though since 2012 locals have been opposing the construction, the CDA has not taken any steps to remove the encroachments,” said Pradeep Kumar Behera, convener of the Kathajodi and Kuakhai Nadi Surakshya Committee.

Expressing similar views, Corporator of ward number-56 of Cuttack, Sanjay Kumar Barala said “The 20-acre patch of land in the area was earlier identified for a deer park. However, later it was understood to be a residential area. But today we have come to know that some realtors have changed it to residential area.”

Meanwhile, officials of the CDA, Environment department and Additional Tehsildar visited the spot and reviewed the situation.

“As per the allegations, this was a river source and now it has been encroached upon. Today we found that boundary walls and pillars have been constructed. The State Pollution Control Board and the administration will launch an inquiry,” said Pradipta Kumar Satpathy, Additional Tehsildar of Cuttack Sadar.

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