As leaders of major political parties oppose the illegal construction at Bidhan Market in Siliguri, traders have themselves started pulling down the construction at the site where seven shops had been gutted in a fire recently.

Tourism minister Gautam Deb, Siliguri mayor and CPIM leader Asok Bhattacharya and now Congress leader Sankar Malakar have all voiced against the illegal construction at one of Siliguri’s oldest markets, which is presently looked after by the Siliguri Jalpaiguri Development Authority (SJDA).

A day after they received a stern notice issued by the SJDA, the traders today started dismantling the construction. Also today, some traders, along with the former president of the Bidhan Market Byabasayee Samiti, met the tourism minister today.

It is learnt that Mr Deb told them that there was no politics in everything that had been happening.

“We are here to save our Siliguri. I will hold a meeting with those traders who belong to that illegal construction group tomorrow at 10 am. After that, I have plans to meet the District Magistrate, and SJDA and police officials to discuss the matter. I am going to Kolkata on 18 July to meet our chief minister and will give her all this information,” said Mr Deb.

“We will have to stop this, as this is related to our city. I heard that some traders are still constructing their shops even after getting the notice from the SJDA, which is totally at their own risk. The government will not take any responsibility if anything happens in the future,” Mr Deb said.

Congress leader Sankar Malakar said today that his party was against illegal constructions at the market. “They cannot do anything illegal at a place where they are supposed to build a new statue of Bidhan Chandra Roy,” he said.