Residents of nearly 14 villages from Palwal, Nuh and Sohna have petitioned the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), requesting the authority to grant them access to the DND-Delhi Vadodara Expressway (NH148NA) through the creation of a cloverleaf interchange.
Local residents said, despite over 3,00,000 people living in the vicinity, they have not been given any access to the under-construction DND-Delhi Vadodara Exressway. Residents allege that the access will give them an easy access to commute easily towards Delhi and Jaipur and will boost the economic activity of the region, thereby generating employment. Sarpanches of around 14 villages, including Hajipur, Manuwad, Dehlaka, Bilhaka, Johlaka, Paroli, Kiranki Khedli, Khuntpuri, Chandpur and Dilani, said that they have written to union transport ministry and the NHAI, for giving them access to the expressway.
Prem Mohan Gaur, a resident of village Hajipur, who is spearheading the demand for the interchange, said that access to highway will help the farmers commute easily and also help them to take their produce to different markets in the neighbouring states. “The people can go to urban areas for jobs. It is a travesty that on a highway, which is built on their land, the farmers don’t have access. We have approached the ministry, local leaders and apprised them of the issue,” said Gaur, adding that they are planning to file a writ petition in the Supreme Court to get relief in the matter.
Locals also said that they will launch a protest movement and hold demonstrations and, if the need arises, hold sit-ins at the site if the interchange was not created to give access to locals. Villagers also pointed out that a railway station is also coming up at Silani as per the orbital railway plan of the Haryana government and the interchange at the highway will boost access to both road and rail infrastructure. “Although the government talks of multimodal transport but when things happen on the ground, the plans are never implemented,” said a local resident on the condition of anonymity.
NHAI officials said that work on this stretch has already been awarded and work shall start from March. Manoj Bansal, project director, Faridabad, said that the decision to provide an interchange has to be taken by the headquarters. “The proposal will be considered on the basis of cost, technical feasibility, and the decision has to be taken by NHAI headquarters. The cost of the interchange would be minimum ₹20 to ₹25 crore,” said Bansal.
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