BANDIPORA: The decrepit condition of the Kralpora-Bandipora road in north Kashmir’s Bandipora district, which leads to the Kishanganga Hydro Electric Power Project, is a nightmare to commute along for villagers living in the area and along this road.
In dozens of villages, including Manrtigam and Kralpora where the Project is located, the roads are in bad shape and are almost non-motorable. The villages which fall along the road include Bonar, Chandaji, Sunderwani and Ajar. People here complain that they are facing immense problems due to the road’s bad condition. “First, part of the road was damaged due to the ferrying of heavy machinery and material to the project site by HCC (Hindustan Construction Company). Now, when the construction is completed, there is still no concern being paid to repair the roads,” a local said.
A resident of Kralpora said that they have waited for long for the blacktopping of the road as “the dust and muck raised by the machines and trucks moving to and from the project site has made our lives miserable”.
Though the road from Pazalpora to Golpathri, where the office complexes of the NHPC and HCC are located, were blacktopped last year, the internal roads of the villages in the project’s vicinity remain poor.
The road widely used by the villagers to commute to several areas and to District Headquarters Bandipora is dotted with big potholes, making driving and even walking along it an ordeal. The locals have been blaming both the government and local administration for ignoring rural areas.
Locals alleged, “The road was built a long time back for light vehicles, but the heavy trucks carrying material for the construction of the Kishanganga Project ruined the road, leaving it ridged by deep ditches.” Another local added, “Now the widening of the Bonar Nallah from the past few months has left the road almost non-motorable.”
Executive Engineer R&B, Bandipora, Sajad Ahmad says tenders have been floated for the temporary restoration of the road and the work will start after the process is complete. “We have already invited tenders for temporary repair work in order to provide a quick breather to the people,” he said, adding that the tendering process for the permanent restoration of the road will follow.