Srinagar: The Khanyar-Zadibal-Pandach (KZP) road widening project has been left in limbo despite dismantling house and shops on the roadsides in several localities in 2010.
The KZP is a 12.5-kilometre road which passes through the heart of the city. Starting from Khanyar, it passes through Hawal to reach SKIMS Soura and ends at Pandach.
Residents alleged that the since the road passes through the old city, it was one reason for its negligence by authorities. “Years passed, governments fall and rise but the old city is always neglected by the each government,” a shopkeeper in Khanyar said.
“We are in ifs and buts, whether we should renovate the shop or wait for the road to widen, since it has been years,” he said. “Non-seriousness of the government has hampered the road widening here in Khanyar for years.”
President, Share-Khaas Traders and Manufactures Coordination Committee, Bashir Ahmad Kanoo, said that the road widening was approved in 2006 and since then, “only dismantling of structures was done by the authorities and road was constructed and left midway”.
“Khanyar area of the old city is neglected every time by the authorities even by the concerned MLA’s from time to time,” Kanoo said.
He added that the Roads and Buildings (R&B) earlier cited removal of structures and subsequent compensating a hurdle for delay, “but they have been compensated and it has been eight years since then”.
He added the project which could hugely reduce traffic congestion in old city, “has become casualty of ill planning and uncaring approach of various regimes”.
Chief Engineer R&B Kashmir, Sami Arif Yesvi told Kashmir Reader that litigation by affected house owners was the main hurdle.
“The department is waiting for the court judgement as a PIL regarding the land acquisition is filed by residents,” he said.
He said that some of the house owners demand enhanced land compensation and have approached the court.
“The department is in demand of huge funds to complete the road widening from Khanyar. We have approached the administration for the release of funds”.
He, however, assured that work on the road widening from Khanyar would be started as soon as possible.