Naga Baba Khatal inches towards makeover

Ranchi Municipal Corporation (RMC) on Sunday invited tenders from consultancy firms for preparing a detailed project report (DPR), which would give shape to its dream project of developing a shopping complex and park at the spot where the Naga Baba Khatal once stood.

The consultant would be selected by the civic body through the tender process. The agency selected, apart from preparing the DPR, would help find for RMC a suitable developer who will finance, build, operate and maintain the infrastructure at Naga Baba Khatal.

RMC chief executive officer Vinay Kumar Choubey said the civic body has plans to set up an underground shopping complex and a theme park on the four acres of vacant land at Naga Baba Khatal, situated near Raj Bhavan.

"The underground shopping complex and theme park would be developed at the open space of Naga Baba Khatal under public-private partnership mode. The agency that we will select now, will help us find a suitable developer," said Choubey.

The four acres of prime land had been in the illegal possession of dairy owners, mostly from different districts of Bihar, who had built hutments and stayed there since the 1950s. There were nearly 200 cowsheds owned by as many families that comprised Naga Baba Khatal.

However, on the orders of Jharkhand High Court, the district administration evicted the illegal settlers in May this year and freed the place from the encroachers. Thereafter, RMC had put an iron wire fence around the plot in order to prevent any illegal settlements there.

According to plan, the civic body will select the consultant by mid-January next year, following which the agency will be asked to prepare the DPR for developing the open space at Naga Baba Khatal.

Meanwhile, the civic body has also decided to purchase two big fogging machines and one small fogging machine, apart from a septic tank cleaner. It has issued a tender on Sunday, asking interested agencies to bid for supplying the three equipment.

While the big fogging machine will cost the civic body anywhere between Rs 7 and 8 lakh, the small one will cost Rs 3 to 4 lakh. The septic tank cleaner too will cost around Rs 8 to 9 lakh.

The civic body already has two fogging machines and two septic tank cleaners.

"We would be able to select a supplier by the first week of January next year. The supplier will have to supply the machines within 15 days from the day an order for the articles is placed," said a RMC official.