Shopkeepers unite against Metro
Various shopkeepers' associations from across the city came together to oppose the Rs 10,300-crore metro project here on Thursday. The shopkeepers, who submitted a memorandum to former health minister of the state, Satpal Gosain, cited various reasons for their opposition to the mega project.
A major resistance was put up to the proposed east-west corridor to be constructed through Jagraon Bridge, Field Ganj and Jail Road, one of the most congested areas of the city.
The shopkeepers from the area said, “Most of the shops here have been around for decades, their owners have been running businesses for generations. This sudden change which will lead to heavy construction in the area will not only bring financial losses but will also affect them emotionally. They are not ready to bear any damage to their personal properties because of the metro project.”
The shopkeepers also raised objection to the two proposed stations, Durga Mata Mandir and Gurdwara Dukh Niwaran, citing that the distance between the two stations is far too less and non-viable from construction point of view.
They also suggested that the corporation could use the vacant space near Durga Mata Mandir for the station instead of Gurdwara Dukh Niwaran.
The shopkeepers from Shahpur road have named their association as 'Metro Sangharsh Committee' with Vipan Sood as its president. The Jail Road shopkeepers said that their area is abutted by 16 streets on the side of Field Ganj and at least seven streets on the other side, including Sukhram Nagar, Karim Pura and others, and the shopkeepers in all these narrow streets will be adversely affected by the metro construction.
“We request the government to not launch the project as proposed, and review it so that no one's business gets affected,” said Vipan Sood. However, senior town planner, Himmat Batra, said, “The project is still in its initial stages; shopkeepers need not worry. Only after indepth study and analysis of all the areas, the final decision will be taken. Right now, we cannot say anything as many angles need to be studied.”