277 illegal structures demolished | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, September 16, 2014 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, September 16, 2014

277 illegal structures demolished

277 illegal structures demolished

The railway authorities yesterday knocked down some 277 illegal establishments along the rail tracks from Tejgaon Railway Station to Nakhal Para in the capital in an ongoing eviction drive.

Around 40 labourers with shovels, machetes and ropes began demolishing illegal shops in the station area around 9:00am on the fourth consecutive day of the drive launched after a train accident at Karwan Bazar claimed four lives.

They also demolished a kitchen market at Nakhal Para, which housed around 200 shops.

Additional members of Railway and Tejgaon police and Railway Nirapatta Bahini (RNB) joined the drive in the wake of a clash between slum dwellers and law enforcers during the eviction the day before.

Slum dwellers in the station area were seen taking away their belongings to evacuate the shanties, but the drive team did not touch their shacks like the previous days due to a High Court ban.

The drive will be continued until lands adjacent to rail tracks in the capital and Narayanganj are freed from grabbers, said Nurunnabi Kabir, divisional estate officer of Bangladesh Railway.

"We have a plan to deploy Ansar members to bar grabbers from re-occupying the land,” he said.

However, visiting the area just two hours after the drive, the Daily Star correspondent saw some traders of the kitchen market set up their shops on and by the rail tracks.

Many evicted in the last three days from Khilgaon to Tejgaon Railway Station have already begun their business activities in their makeshift shops.

Abul Kashem, a trader of Nakhal Para kitchen market, told The Daily Star that the market opens around 4:00pm and the shop was his only means of livelihood.

"I cannot keep shut my shop even for a day. The government has to rehabilitate traders before evicting them," he said. 

Abdul Majid, officer-in-charge of Dhaka Railway Police Station, however, said the authorities would form a team comprising railway officials, railway police and RNB members to make sure that no one could occupy rail tracks or areas adjacent to them.


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