Raipur: Hirapur railway under-bridge is destined to complete by March 31, 2015 and is expected to be available for public use within couple of weeks after completion. Once started, it will bring huge relief for about 50 thousand people who have to pass through railway crossing each day to go to their work. Train pass by every 7 minute on an average through this railway crossing forcing people to wait for quite a while.

railway level crossing india
traffic jams are common at railway level crossings in india

The under-pass should have been completed much earlier. Sighting the troubles the locals face on daily basis, the foundation of Hirapur under bridge was laid down in 2008. It was planned to be constructed in 2 years. But due to negligence of government agencies and local administration, the work could not be completed until now. Much of the problem was related to land acquisition. Earlier it was planned that the construction will happen 20 m away from level crossing. Later the plan changed and 34 m was decided to be the ideal distance from level crossing on which construction should be done. All this indecisiveness on part of local authorities caused further delays, which also has affected the construction cost of the bridge adversely.

Now the box of the bridge is complete and approaching roads are being worked upon. PWD (Public Works Department) officials have said that all should be in readiness by the end of March.

Earlier, before the state of Chhattisgarh was conceived, most of the traffic on this way was of Jarway, Hirapur, ring road-2, and transport-nagar areas. In last five years or so, many private developers, real estate builders, have come up with housing projects in the area. The housing board has developed a colony named kabirnagar which has many big apartments. This has added to traffic. People living in dozens of wards of Raipur municipal corporation use this route and are the one who are most affected.

The trains to Bhilai Steel Plant, and many goods and passenger trains pass through this crossing causing the gate to close for about 5 to 10 minutes. Every day about 26 passenger and 138 goods trains cross by. From the time of closing of railway gate to the time by which train is crossed, about 250 vehicles line up on a congested road which is only about 10-15 ft wide. either side of crossing. When the gate opens for a limited time the traffic from both sides converge and merge causing a traffic jam, This causes great problems for people having emergency, especially the ills needing to reach the hospital and students going to examination center. Many young men having applied to jobs have failed to reach the interview site due to delay caused by the jam.

There is no alternate route for the people. The people of following wards are expected to get the biggest relief from the inauguration of railway underpass - Vir Savarkar Nagar, ramkrishna paramhans nagar, sant ravidas nagar, shahid bhagat singh nagar, pandit ishwar charan shukla nagar, and manmohan singh bakshi nagar.

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