City roads in shambles, government in slumber

By Ishfaq Reshi

SRINAGAR: The commuters in this summer capital of the state are having a tough time as the Roads and Buildings (R&B) department has failed to carry out necessary repairs of the roads.
Even the major roads such as Batmaloo-Qamarwari, Jehangir Chowh-Soura, and Lal Chowk-Hazratbal, roads are in a dilapidated state.
“The non-seriousness of the authorities can be gauged from the fact that the road leading to SKIMS, the Valley’s lone tertiary-care hospital, is in a mess. It poses a risk to the lives of patients who are referred from SMHS Hospital to SKIMS,” Aqib Mir, a resident of Qamarwari, said.
The road from Qamarwari to Hawal is dotted with potholes.
“The road was repaired last year, but there were certain stretches that were left unattended. Now, the unrepaired portions have turned potholes and the road has become accident prone,” a resident of Hawal said.
The residents of old Srinagar are also dismayed by the condition of the roads.
“We are suffering,” Muhammad Sultan, a resident said.
The road near Eidgah has also developed potholes.
“Just a few months ago, the road was macadamised. But only after two months, the macadam started coming off. If this is the condition of a vital road, one can imagine the condition of other roads in the Valley,” Faisal Ahmad, a local at Eidgah, said.
Last year, the authorities claimed that the black topping of the roads would last for at least three years. But only nine months later, most roads seem to be in need of fresh repairs.
The condition of the roads turns worse during bad weather.
“The bad condition of the roads results in stagnation of rain water, and people suffer,” said Mudasir Ahmad, a shopkeeper at Hawal.
Chief Engineer of the Roads and Buildings department, Satish Razdan, said blacktopping of roads would be started later this month.
“We are not able to carry out the repairs because of the bad weather,” he said.