From our Correspondent
Bongaigaon, January 21: Demanding an underpass in the under construction four lane corridor in front of Bongaigaon Refinery Workshop Main Gate, Bongaigaon Refinery Workers Co-Ordition Committee (BGRWCC) took out a mass rally on Thursday from BGR Main Gate to DC office, Chirang.
P K Sarma of the Bongaigaon Refinery Employees’ Union said that initially there was a proposal for providing underpass in front of IOCL, BGR Main Gate apparently by construction of four-lane NH 31-C. “But now despite requirement, NHAI recently reviewed its decision not to provide the underpass. Every day more than 5,000 people work inside the refinery, including contractual labourers, and they have to cross the NH. On an average more than 3,000 heavy motor vehicles and light motor vehicles along with motorcycles, cycles and pedestrians cross the tiol Highway to enter and exit from the plant during morning and evening hours. In addition to that, on an average 100 vehicles per hour pass through the main gate. Therefore, movement of such heavy traffic through the proposed ROB/Service Road may not be feasible and may lead to severe safety hazard. Further, in a hydrocarbon industry like ours during any emergency, disaster situation, more than 5,000 people have to be evacuated within a short possible time. In practice, such evacuation is not possible without an underpass in front of main gate,” he said.
The protesters submitted a memorandum to the Deputy Commissioner (DC) in this regard.
However, some local people alleged that this agitation of BGR Workers Co-ordition Committee was a political game. “As much we know, tiol Highway Authority of India had a proposal to construct an underpass in front of the main gate of BGR. But the BGR authority and employees first objected to the construction of this underpass for unknown reasons. Now since the last few months, just before the legislative assembly elections in Assam, this organization wants to come into focus with the demand for construction of this underpass. We are not against construction of this underpass as it is necessary, but why were these people silent at the time of cancellation of the proposal of NHAI for construction of this underpass? If they had been so active at that time, then maybe NHAI might not have cancelled their proposal. Some leaders of this committee are trying to take political benefit from this agitation,” said some local people.