The parking lot near the college. (Mohan Lama)
Darjeeling, Nov. 24: The Gorkha National Liberation Front and Trinamul have objected to the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration’s parking lot project near Darjeeling Government College terming it “faulty” as it would “vitiate the environment of an educational institute”.
A multi-level parking lot near the college and another near Darjeeling railway station were among the first few projects announced by the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha-run GTA in 2012.
The construction of the parking areas had started in 2014 and Morcha chief Bimal Gurung had said he had invited Union home minister Rajnath Singh to inaugurate those in the next couple of weeks.
N.B. Khawash, spokesman, Trinamul (hills), said: “We know that there is need for parking space but a parking lot near an educational institution like Darjeeling Government College, which was established in 1948, is not right. It is bound to vitiate the environment of an educational institute.”
Asked why the party did not raised any objection before, Khawash said: “In 2012-13, I was just an individual. I had not joined the party.”
The GNLF has also criticised the project.
“The parking lot has come up close to the college. Instead of looking at expanding the college area to create a better educational hub, the Morcha has set up a parking lot,” said Y. Lama, co-ordinator of the GNLF’s central program cell.
The college campus and the parking lot are separated by Lebong Cart Road.
Lama said he was not actively involved with the party earlier. “But when something wrong happens, one can always raise concerns at any time. I am consulting the party to draw the attention of central leaders towards the project.”
The project costs around Rs 23 crore, sources said.
“The structure will have parking space for 300 cars. Our plan was to create parking space for 500 vehicles on a
5040sqm area but the state has given us only 3200sqm,” said Jyoti Kumar Rai, the assistant secretary and GTA Sabha member in charge of transport.
Asked about the objection raised by Trinamul and the GNLF, Rai said: “They are merely opposing for the sake of opposition. What stopped them from raising their voice when the construction had just started? The college area is well protected and fenced.”
Khawash denied the charge and said he was not opposing “for the sake of opposition”. He said: “Recently, I visited RKSP School and the way the school was being built (by the GTA) is commendable. We do appreciate projects which are properly executed.”
The district administration had, however, stopped the construction of the school on security grounds. The construction was allowed later.
There has been no objection on the parking lot near the station that would be able to accommodate more than 100 cars. “The project cost is around Rs 6.19 crore,” said Rai.
[Via: The Telegraph]
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