The Chennai Corporation on Thursday removed encroachments from the highly congested Choolaimedu High Road, which sees an enormous volume of traffic during rush hour.

Fifty civic body employees pulled down projections, including sign boards, sunshades, grills and constructions, on footpaths. Most shops and commercial establishments downed shutters during the drive.

Zonal officials said that the move was to ease pedestrian and traffic movement on the road that connects Nelson Manickam Road and Kodambakkam area. The drive, which began in the morning, went on till 3 p.m. during which many shopkeepers removed boards and electrical fittings on their own.

“People are saying that there are plans to widen the road and construct a bridge in the area. If that happens many of our businesses would be badly affected,” said a shopkeeper. However, Corporation officials denied that there were any such plans.

At some places when Corporation officials and staff went to remove obstructions, residents and building owners came out with patta documents and stopped their attempts. S.Dharanikumar, a resident, said he had not encroached upon any portion of the road.

“Without our consent the Corporation has pulled down grills and construction from our property,” he added.

A posse of policemen aided the eviction drive in which two trucks, a loader and earthmover were used.

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Civic issues & HealthMay 14, 2012