BHUBANESWAR: A joint enforcement team of the Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) and Bhubaneswar Development Authority (BDA) was waylaid by BJP activists here on Wednesday while the former was engaged in an eviction drive at Vidyut Marg which leads to Kalinga Stadium.
The incident occurred at around 12.30 pm when the enforcement team comprising six squads was removing BJP flags and posters from Governor House Square to Kalinga Stadium as the stretch was declared as no-hoarding zone for the 22nd Asian Athletics Championships.
Activists, led by a person who claimed to be youth wing president of BJP, prevented the squad from removing the flags and posters. There was a heated exchange of words between them as the activists demanded to stop the drive immediately.
While the civic body had given permission for hoisting flags of the countries participating in the championships, the saffron party had put up flags and posters of BJP president Amit Shah, who is on a tour to the State to attend ‘Mo Booth Sabuthu Majbhoot’ programme.
“This shows the intolerance of the ruling BJD after a huge success of National BJP president Amit Shah’s Ganjam visit. The removal of the hoardings of Shah before his Dhauli visit has been done under the instructions of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik who became unnerved after the successful programme of BJP in his district,” BJP spokesperson Dilip Mohanty said.
Enforcement Officer Prakash Patra, who was leading the drive, said, “We had instructions to clear all encroachments and advertisements along the stretch from Airport to Kalinga Stadium. The incident took place between Power House Square and Sastri Nagar Square.”
The BJP activists blamed the BMC for carrying out the drive intentionally at the behest of the State Government. The matter was resolved after two police teams from Kharvela Nagar and Capital police stations arrived at the spot.
Though the enforcement continued after the activists were evicted, the team could not manage to remove a few BJP advertisements and party flags between AG Square and the Airport.