GOALPARA, Dec 17 � An eviction drive was carried out by the district administration for clearing a stretch of land near the Paglatek Shiv Mandir, which is situated at Barbhita, around 7 km from the town.
Circle Officer, Balijana, Dhiman Kr Choudhury, who was on the spot and conducted the eviction drive, said that at least 60 to 70 members belonging to four families were evicted, after they were issued prior notices in advance, allowing sufficient time to clear out from the place. All the temporary dwelling huts and structures were razed to the ground, he added.
Talking to this correspondent, the Circle Officer said that Paglatek Shiv Mandir is an ancient monument and is a protected site under Archaeological Survey Of India (ASI). The eviction drive was unfortunate, but necessary, as there is an utmost need to protect and preserve the site as well as its surroundings. The plot from where these encroachers were evicted is a flat plain used otherwise for parking of vehicles during the festive seasons and pujas, he said.
Meanwhile, local people and the Paglatek Mandir Committee have welcomed and thanked the district administration for taking such an initiative for the protection of the temple site. The local people have demanded setting up of a parking shed at the eviction site as it is a famous picnic site and adequate space is needed for parking vehicles.