Residents decry slow pace of work on Shopian-Bijbehara road

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Shopian: Residents of seeral villages in Chitragam and Imamsahib belt of district Shopian are protesting the slow pace of work on Shopian-Bejbrahara road. Inhabitants alleged the construction agencies have bulldozed the road without providing an alternative route to the area.
A group of villagers from Chitragam Kalan told Kashmir Reader that the contractors working on the road from Chitragam onwards were not following official guidelines. They said that road has been bulldozed at several places resulting in heavy traffic jams and accidents.
Mubashir Ahmad, a resident of Dachoo said that two accidents took places in last 24 hours due to the pathetic condition of road.
“At several places they have made drains through the centre of road and at other places they have put sand, mud and gravel due to which it is taking us more than one and half hour to reach Shopian,” he said.
Another resident added that orchardists in Killora area have made holes in PHE pipelines, running along the road making thus making the road slippery.
Residents said that the contractor working on the Chitragam to Bijbehara stretch was following guidelines and people there were not facing problems, however the contactor working on road from Chitragam onwards “has made mess of the road”.
An official from R&B department told Kashmri Reader that residents would have to bear with the work.
“We have to work on it, we cannot bring a ready-made road through air. Residents there have to wait for some time and they will get the best road,” the official said.
Executive Engineer Roads and Buildings Department, Shopian, Zahoor Ahmad said that they have given guidelines to the contractors to work on road sides.
“We have not created any problems as the original road is as it is, but we are developing its sides,” Zahoor said adding that the PHE department has some pending works which also creates “problems for us”.
“They (PHE) were removing the old lines which people feel have been done by us,” he said.
He, however, added that he would visit the area tomorrow to take stock of the situation.