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Patna High Court dismisses plea seeking direction to Railways for proper passage in Samastipur

The Patna High Court dismissed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by the resident of the Locality being aggrieved by the barricading done by the Railway Authority affecting the right of passage of public at large.

The PIL has been filed seeking a direction upon the Railway Authorities, especially respondent no.4, Divisional Railway Manager, Samastipur Railway Division, respondent no.9, District Magistrate cum Collector, East Champaran and respondent no.6, the Project Director, National Highway 527-D, National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) to have a proper coordination for passage of common people with regard to the land situated in East Champaran, falling in between Raxaul Railway Station to Sagauli Muzaffarpur Railway Line and further Raxaul Railway Station to Narkatiaganj, Railway Junction.

It is submitted on behalf of the petitioner that since the construction with regard to the National Highway has started approximately ten years ago and the government has proposed a construction of the over bridge in the year 2014, the people who have purchased the land subsequently had no idea that any change will take place or there will be a blockage of the complete area, falling in Mauza Chikani, East Champaran. The petitioner on instruction submitted that the railway has a power house station near Raxaul Station at Sagauli Muzaffarpur Railway Line, which falls in the western side of National Highway-28 (NH-527D) at the corner and the Railway Authorities have planned to block the entire National Highway28 in the northern side as well as in the southern side, so that the public can only have the access to over bridge.

The Counsel for the petitioner has also referred to Sections 16 and 17 of the Railways Act, 1989 and submitted that it is the responsibility of the Railway Administration to accommodate the person adjoining the railway crossing, bridges, passage over and in that the State Government have to specify the date and to work in cooperation to the same. In sum and substance, the grievance of the petitioner is confined to lack of proper coordination amongst the different departments and the railways.

It is to be noted by the High Court that the concern of the petitioner and other residents of the locality is being looked after by the railway administration, State Government and the local authority maintaining the road and they are bound to take decisions in the interest of public safety.

Considering the nature of the grievance and the fact that the petitioner has already raised his voice before the appropriate authority of the Railway Division, East Central Railway, the Division Bench of Chief Justice K. Vinod Chandran and Justice Harish Kumar does not find any merit in the matter to proceed under jurisdiction. Accordingly, the Court dismissed a petition with a liberty to the petitioner to agitate his grievance before the appropriate authority/forum.

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