Dispute over East Fort land heats up

Revenue officials ignore collector’s orders to collect tax from KSRTC

Thiruvananthapuram: The dispute over the KSRTC owned land at East Fort has escalated with the village office refusing to accept land tax from KSRTC violating the Collector’s order. KSRTC owns 73.5 cents land at East Fort where the current city bus terminal is located.

A senior official of KSRTC said that the revenue authorities were not allowing KSRTC to settle the tax dues. “We are planning to redesign the city bus terminal to resolve heavy traffic congestion at East Fort. There are 13 traders running shops on our land illegally and we have been asking the district administration to take action. We can move the court only after settling the tax arrears and the revenue authorities are trying to protect these traders by not allowing us to pay tax,” said the official.

When asked, district collector Biju Prabhakar said that he had issued an order demanding that the revenue authorities accept land tax from KSRTC. “We need a holistic rehabilitation plan for traders at East Fort. That is why we have not initiated any eviction drive. Attakulangara bus terminal project is one plan but unfortunately uncertainly looms large over the project,” said Mr Biju Prabhakar.

Thiruvananthapuram Development Authority (Trida) despite getting a favourable order from the HC is still groping in the dark and has failed to take the project to the next level. The Education Department has allotted 2 acres belonging to the school to construct a shopping complex cum bus terminal to decongest East Fort. Stiff protests on the part of the Attakulangara Central School protection samiti has landed the authorities in a fix.

( Source : deccan chronicle )
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