Special Correspondent

COIMBATORE: Under heavy police protection, the special demolition team of the Coimbatore Corporation removed a 64 sq.ft. temple from a road at HUDCO Colony at Tatabad in the city on Saturday.

Assistant Town Planning Officer S. Ravichandran said the temple had obstructed traffic by encroaching substantial space on a 30-feet-wide road. A dead tree nearby, which also choked traffic, was removed after getting the permission of the Revenue Department.

The official said the Corporation had issued notices to the persons maintaining the temple, asking them to remove the structure. Some Hindu organisations had opposed the move to remove it. Police had also advised against demolition as the situation was tense then.

With the situation looking conducive for the demolition on Saturday, it was carried out with the city police providing protection, he said. “Now, four-wheelers can pass through this stretch. The temple and the tree had allowed space only for two-wheelers,” he said.

With the operation on Saturday, the Corporation had so far removed 23 temples that had encroached upon roads. The drive was being carried out to rid the city's roads of encroachments that hampered smooth flow of traffic.