Two old police stations to be relocated

Rajesh Nair

PONDICHERRY: The Police Department will relocate two old stations and demolish one of the oldest stations here and build a new one in its place.

Land acquisition and building design for the Lawspet and Orleanpet stations are ready, and work will begin soon, Inspector-General of Police P. R. Meena The Hindu .

The Lawspet station would be shifted to a new building along East Coast Road and the Orleanpet station to a site opposite the new bus stand.

The North SP office would be shifted to the new building for the Orleanpet station, he said.

The Department also decided to demolish the Odiansalai station, one of the oldest, and a building would be constructed there.

"First, we were looking for an alternate site to shift the station and retain the present structure since it was built during the French time. But we couldn't find an ideal location within the limits; so we decided to demolish it and go in for a new building," he said.

Members Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage said the Government has not sought the permission of the organisation, which is mandatory for any construction taken up after demolishing heritage or buildings that have heritage features.

INTACH member V. Shadish said: "As far as the Odiansalai station is concerned, we have not been approached for clearance. Though the building is not listed as a heritage building, it has all the features. We hope the building is preserved." The Government had enough land to construct a new station, he said

A police officer, on condition of anonymity, said: "It is the only station which is unique in construction and is a landmark in the town. It should be retained."

Another officer suggested that the `heritage-look building' be used as a police museum. The museum, situated in the North SP office, was out of bounds to the public.