New houses by 2025 for those affected by collapse of buildings due to Kolkata metro work: KMRC, ET RealEstate

September 1, 2023

<p>File Photo</p>
File Photo

KOLKATA: Four years after several houses collapsed on this date due to severe land subsidence during East West Metro tunnelling work at Bowbazar in central Kolkata leaving many residents homeless, the KMRC on Thursday said new houses will be built for them by the end of 2025.

The affected residents held a candlelight rally at Bowbazar demanding a time-frame for construction of the new houses, and also blocked B B Ganguly Street at the junction with Durga Pituri Lane, where several houses were damaged, for some time.

“We told the affected people that by the first week of April, 2024, the construction of new buildings for those whose houses have collapsed will begin,” East West Metro project executing agency Kolkata Metro Rail Corporation‘s General Manager, administration, A K Nandy, said.

He told PTI that the tendering process for building the houses is underway.

“It will take one-and-a-half years to complete the construction work and by the end of 2025, the houses will be built,” Nandy said.

President of an organisation of the affected residents, Biswajit Motilal, claimed that around 155 of them are still having to stay away from their homes as their houses either collapsed or were severely damaged.

The KMRC is paying rent for alternative residences arranged by the agency for the displaced people.

“We want the authorities to give us a roadmap of what is being done to bring us back to Bowbazar and a time frame by which it will be done,” vice president of Bowbazar Mati-o-Manab Kalyan Society, Pradip Lahiri told reporters at a protest programme held near the site of the accident on August 31, 2019.

Senior KMRC officials met the affected residents on Thursday evening at Bowbazar and assured them of completion of building of new houses by December, 2025.

Nandy said some residents demanding that their houses, damaged partially in the accidents, be repaired, have been asked to provide details to the local councillor, who would forward those to the KMRC.

On August 31, 2019, a tunnel boring machine (TBM) had hit an aquifer leading to severe ground subsidence and collapse of several buildings at Bowbazar.

At least three houses were damaged again in May, 2022, owing to ground subsidence caused by water seepage during work for joining the tunnels coming from the Sealdah side in the east and the Esplanade side in the west.

The KMRC had evacuated many people after underground water seepage caused cracks in 12 other buildings at Madan Dutta Lane in Bowbazar on October 14, 2022.

The East West Metro corridor connecting Howrah Maidan and Salt Lake Sector V is partially operational between Sector V and Sealdah stations.

Completion of the total project has been delayed owing to the accidents.

Out of the 16.6 km length of East West metro, underground corridor constitutes 10.8 km between Howrah and Phoolbagan with the tunnel passing below the Hooghly River, while the rest is elevated corridor, according to a KMRC official.

  • Published On Sep 1, 2023 at 02:00 PM IST

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