CUTTACK: The ever busy and accident prone Sikharpur crossing will be permanently closed from February 15. Vehicular interjections from Jobra and Mahanadi Vihar sides to the National Highway No-5 will be curtailed through permanent barricading to ensure smooth flow of traffic on the latter, the Traffic Management Committee has announced.
Vehicular movement on both the sides would now be through the service roads and commuters will use the Kaliaboda underpass and OMP Square to access the opposite ends. The service roads would be repaired and relaid by the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) within the stipulated date and have proper lighting on both the stretches.
The decision was taken in view of the rising accidents with even fatal consequences despite the existence of electronic signalling systems and deployment of traffic personnel to man the crossing. On an average, the crossing sees more than 15 accidents a month with commuters suffering minor or major injuries. Earlier, the Samrat Hall crossing had been closed for similar considerations.
The High Court appointed committee under chairmanship of Commissioner of police BK Sharma also expressed dissatisfaction over the delay in operation of City Bus Service on the Route No 3 from Jagatpur to Bhubaneswar and back. It has put the operator Dream Team Sahara on notice to deploy buses on the route within this month.
The first ‘No Tolerance Zone’ for traffic violations at Satichoura would also go into operation from February 15. The road widening and allied works have been completed and the High mast lighting system is on its final stages of installation.
The temporary vending zone to be established at Ghodasal near the Gourishankar park to rehabilitate the vendors evicted from the park precincts, however, has encountered problems due to numerous claimants. The vacant space at Ghodasal can accommodate 60 to 70 vendors but the number of applicants seems to be substantially more. The Committee, thus, has decided to screen applicants for confirming actually affected one by way of sworn affidavits and submission of documents like contributions to the local Puja Committees and attestation by local market office bearers.