At one point, removing roadside utility poles became necessary in order for the project to continue but complications in removing the poles halted the work
A development project worth Tk129 crore, undertaken in Cox’s Bazar town for the renovation of public roads and drains, is experiencing major setbacks due to complications arising from a removal of hundreds of roadside utility poles being in the way.
According to official sources, under the Municipal Governance and Services Project (MGSP), the municipal authority has been repairing drains and widening roads around Cox’s Bazar town.
The project is financed by the World Bank (WB).
As of now, 70% of the project work has been completed.
For the municipal authority to complete the remaining 30% of the work, it needs to remove around 250 roadside utility poles.
The complications arose when the power division, having jurisdiction over the utility poles, reportedly asked for an unreasonable allocation from the municipal authority for the removal work.
However, at a recent meeting held between the power division and municipal authority, the power division engineers assured of their highest cooperation in this regard.
Under the WB project, the municipal authority began repairing drains and roads around Cox's Bazar municipal town, including Shaheed Sarani, airport road, Mahajerpara, Baharchhara Golchattar, Badshaghona, Goldhighirpara, Jelepark and Kalatali.
At one point, removing roadside utility poles became necessary in order for the project to continue.
But complications in removing the poles halted the work.
As a result of incomplete drainage work, sewage water began flooding the streets around the Press Club intersection, Mahajerpara, Baharchhara and Kalatali areas, inconveniencing pedestrians, citizens and, most importantly, tourists visiting Cox's Bazar.
Speaking on the issue, Titon Das, deputy assistant engineer of Cox's Bazar municipality, said: “The power division usually charges Tk5,000-6,000 for removing one utility pole.
But now the authority is asking for allocation that is several times more than the usual cost.
“However, when we requested the division to consider the limitations of our project, they assured us of their cooperation. Without their cooperation, it will be difficult to complete the project within the stipulated time.”
Abdul Quader Gani, executive engineer of Cox's Bazar Power Development Board, said: “The utility pole removal falls under the existing MGSP project.
If the project engineers want our cooperation, we are ready to cooperate if the municipal authority is prepared to allocate appropriate funds for the job. Recently, we had a meeting with the Cox's Bazar municipal authority where we assured it of our cooperation in this regard.”
Speaking to Dhaka Tribune, Cox's Bazar Municipality Mayor Mujibur Rahman said: “The project is facing some complications but the power division says it will cooperate and facilitate the development activities.
So I am optimistic that the project will be completed by June this year.”