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Residents shocked as notices issued for land acquisition

Revenue authorities began serving notices to residents of Bharathi Nagar Extension, a colony close to the Tiruchi Airport, for the proposed acquisition of their land for the expansion project here on Thursday.

Armed with a bunch of notices, a team from the Public Works Department conducted measurements inside and outside houses situated in the area, much to the shock of the residents whose properties are to be acquired.

As a precautionary measure, a posse of police personnel headed by an officer in the rank of Assistant Commissioner of Police was deployed in that area along with a police vehicle equipped with a camera to prevent any untoward incidents when the PWD team was carrying out its assigned task.

Bharathi Nagar Extension is situated a few kilometres away from the Tiruchi international airport.

The proposal envisages the extension of the length of the airport runway too .

As soon as the PWD team headed by a couple of Assistant Engineers descended in the area, residents of the Bharathi Nagar Extension were shocked and some of them complained that they came to know that their land was to be acquired for airport expansion only after seeing the notice.

The notice issued on behalf of the District Revenue Officer was circulated to the specified houses in the fast growing dense residential locality by the PWD team which took measurements in all residences for valuation of the building and other amenities alone.

The show cause notice asked why the lands should not be acquired for the airport expansion and asked the residents concerned to explain their stance and reason within 30 days.

The residents put forth their concerns to the PWD team which, however, continued with their assigned task besides pasting notices outside some of the houses and taking down the mobile numbers of the residents.

S. Vadivel, a resident of the area said he had constructed the house only a year ago after obtaining approval from the Corporation. “Our entire livelihood will be destroyed if my land is taken for airport expansion”, said Vadivel working as a cashier in a petrol bunk here.

“Where do we go if our land is taken away from us”, he further said claiming that this was the first time such a notice is being issued.

Another resident Ms. Leela said she had bought the house around five years ago after taking Rs. 12 lakh as loan and mobilising resources through other means.

Shocked by the notice, Ms Leela said she did not know what to do. “Where do we go now as our children are studying in a nearby school”, she asked.

Some residents said they planned to meet the Collector shortly and represent their case. About 30 property owners were issued notices during the day, sources said.

A PWD official said the measurements of the houses including other amenities were checked to arrive at valuation.

Only a few days ago, residents of Pattathammal Street situated near the airport expressed their stiff opposition to acquisition of their lands for airport expansion project by staging a ‘waiting agitation’ along the Tiruchi – Pudukottai National Highway.


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