R&B fails to construct approach roads
Anantnag: A bridge that cost more than 8 crore rupees, has been lying defunct for more than six years now and the Roads and Buildings Department (R&B) has failed to construct the approach roads on both sides of it, here in Sallar area of south Kashmir’s Anantnag district.
R&B’s neglect of the bridge has been causing severe inconvenience to hundreds of people in the area, who have to walk several miles to be able to board public transport.
The construction on the bridge in Bhagwani village near Sallar, supposed to connect dozens of villages in Aishmuqam and Sallar areas to each other, was taken up in the year 2010 by Jammu and Kashmir Projects Construction Corporation (JKPCC).
“The bridge was supposed to be completed in two years time but it could not be after its cost escalated from 6.72 Crores to 8.39 Crores,” an official from the JKPCC told Kashmir Reader.
He said that the construction on the Bridge was finally completed in the year 2014.
“We completed our part back then and it was the R&B department who were supposed to take up the construction of roads on either side of the bridge,” the official said. “The roads were 1.5 Kilometres on one side and 1 kilometre on the other side,” he added.
The R&B in the last six years failed to construct the roads, leaving the bridge defunct. Kashmir Reader talked to the Executive Engineer of R&B for Anantnag, Javed Qazi, who said that the bridge could not be taken up in any scheme during the last few years.
“This year’s quota has now been fulfilled and it cannot be taken up now. We will make sure that the bridge is put in some scheme the next year,” Qazi told Kashmir Reader.
The residents in the area, meanwhile, continue to suffer and say they have to walk more than 4 Kilometres to find a ride as their villages are without any public transport services dur to the defunct bridge.
“I had to go to Anantnag this morning and had to walk around 4.5 Kilometres till Sallar to board a sumo. It is an everyday grind,” Saleem Ahmad, a resident of Bhagwani village, told Kashmir Reader.
The residents rue that they have to walk the distances even when they have a patient to take to hospital or in case of other emergencies. “We have been moving from one official to another to get their attention towards our plight but to no avail,” the residents said.
The people will have to wait another year, at least, before the bridge is taken up under some “scheme”.