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Ludhiana

Posted at: Jan 14, 2018, 1:34 AM; last updated: Jan 14, 2018, 1:34 AM (IST)

No check on misuse of green belts in city

Harshraj Singh

Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 13

While the Municipal Corporation (MC) is ignoring development of various parks and green belts in the city, it has also failed to pay attention to their misuse.

The civic body is not taking action against encroachments in different parks and green belts in the city. As a result unauthorised businesses are being run from the areas reserved for green belts.

In a survey carried out in 2015 it was found that over 45 parks and green belts had been encroached. Instead of taking action against those indulging in encroachments the horticulture wing, tehbazari wing and building branch of the MC are passing the buck. Sources said the misuse of green belts and parks was on rise in the city.

A neglected green belt area, near Buddha Nullah Bridge on Old GT Road, is being used to store a large stock of gravel, sand and other construction material. Besides, the place is also being used to store scrap waste by some persons. It is learnt that fencing at the green belt has either been stolen or broken at many spots.

A shopkeeper on condition of anonymity said the construction material was being loaded and unloaded from tippers and other vehicles in the green belt for more than last six months.

“The material is also sent to other places in vehicles. We don’t know who keeps this construction material here,” he added.

Meanwhile, some parks are being used by security guards of political leaders. Temporary structures have been erected for their accommodation on encroached portion of parks.

Besides, repair of cars, wood works, parking of vehicles and other businesses are running from green belts in various parts of the city. Sources said most encroached parks were either being used for religious or business purpose. Interestingly, cow dung is being dumped in several parks of Dairy Complexes on Hambran Road.

Kuldeep Singh Khaira of Vigilant Citizens’ Forum Ludhiana said, “I had complained about encroachments in various city parks and green belts, but action was never taken against violators of laws. The civic body should take steps to beautify such places and remove encroachments so that public can use them.”

A member of the District Ludhiana Grievances Redressal Committee, Satish Thaman, said the MC should ensure development of parks and green belts in the city. Encroachments from the green belt areas must be removed otherwise its actual purpose was defeated.

The executive engineer of the MC horticulture wing, Surinder Kumar, said, “We have conducted survey of parks and found some encroachments. However, the tehbazari wing is supposed to remove temporary encroachments while permanent encroachments are to be removed by the building branch.”

The executive engineer (B&R), Teerath Bansal, said, “It seems construction material may have been kept by a contractor or any store owner in the green belt area on Old GT Road. But, we will take required action in this regard.”

The tehbazari superintendent, Jasdev Singh Sekhon, said, “Green belts and parks come under the horticulture branch. It is responsibility of officials of the horticulture wing to prepare an action plan. A tehbazari team will accompany them for the removal of encroachments.”

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