Rajbiraj, January 3
Locals from Rajbiraj Municipality’s bazaar area today started agitation demanding a halt to construction of Postal Highway, saying that it would ruin the city’s beauty and render thousands homeless in Saptari.
They said they had launched the agitation as construction of Postal Highway through the bazaar area would erase the identity of the historical town Rajbiraj and would leave thousands homeless.
Postal Highway and Subsidiary Highway Victims and Save Municipality Committee Rajbiraj have led the agitation.
The locals had staged the protest shouting slogans against road construction. The rally that started from the premises of Shiv Temple took a round of Rajbiraj Municipality. The protesters submitted a memorandum to the prime minister through Rajbiraj Municipality Mayor Shambhu Yadav and CDO Bhagirath Pandey.
Struggle Committee Coordinator Ram Krishna Das said they had submitted the memorandum saying that construction of the highway at the heart of Rajbiraj would spoil the city’s beauty and identity and thousands of locals would lose their homes.
The notice from the Department of Roads that it is preparing to start its work has made locals tense. “Injustice has been done to us. Thus, we had to come to the street”, said Das. He said that constructing the postal highway through south or north of Rajbiraj would be the right option to save homes and save the city. “Constructing the road through the south or north of Rajbiraj will help develop less developed places,” Das added.
Das said that they were forced to agitate as their pleas to stop construction of the road went unheeded.
The Department of Roads has sent a map of the Postal Highway that runs through Siraha Road, Ram temple, Court Road, CDO’s Bungalow, Hanuman Temple, Kanchanpur Road and Padariya connecting it to Mahendra Highway and to the Department of Survey in Kathmandu.
Similarly, a map of Kunauli-Rajbiraj-Rupani Subsidiary Highway that runs from Kunauli Road at Rajbiraj, Neta Chowk, Gajendra Chowk, Hanuman Temple and Rupani Mode with 21 metres on both sides has been submitted to the Department of Survey in Kathmandu.
When construction of both the roads was about to kick off after the approval of the tender, locals started the agitation.