Orissa High Court sets June 18 deadline for expert panel to submit report on box drain dispute

Prof Sumanta Haldar of IIT Bhubaneswar along with his colleague associate professor, School of Infrastructure Arindam Sarkar is part of the committee.
Orissa High Court
Orissa High Court Photo | Express

CUTTACK: The Orissa High Court has fixed June 18 as deadline for an expert committee to assess the feasibility of completing the box drain as per original plan under the state-of-the-art sewerage and drainage project in Cuttack city.

The box drain was planned on over 3.5 km (3,500 metre) stretch of main storm water channel (MSWC)-1 from Buxi Bazar through Chhatra Bazar to Matrubhawan. But Water Corporation of Odisha (WATCO) had cut short the project to 2,690 metre from Buxi Bazar till Chhatra Bazar. The decision was taken on the ground that it is not practically possible to have the box drain on that stretch with buildings along its side.

“After going through the reasons assigned, we think it proper that let the said site be inspected/verified by the separate expert committee and they will submit the report through the counsel for the state as to whether the construction of box drain in that particular area is technically feasible without affecting the existing buildings which are situated in the close vicinity of the drain,” the bench of Justice SK Sahoo and Justice V Narasingh said in its order.

Prof Sumanta Haldar of IIT Bhubaneswar along with his colleague associate professor, School of Infrastructure Arindam Sarkar is part of the committee. “The report shall be furnished by the expert team on the next date, which is fixed to June 18, 2024 at 2.00 pm,” the bench said adding, “The DCP (Cuttack) shall ensure that there is no hindrance at the time of inspection to be made by the expert committee.”

The CEO WATCO shall be the nodal officer. Superintending engineer, R&B Division-I Pravash Kumar Majhi, a two-member advocates’ committee along with the Amicus Curiae NK Mohanty shall remain present with the expert committee at the time of inspection.

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