By our Staff Reporter
GUWAHATI, March 21: The general public residing along the entire stretch of Old AT Road from Dharapur to Garal and beyond see a section of people doing business with sand infringing upon their right to use the road. Like shrinking violet, general public there do not oppose it or lodge any complaint against the menace with the authority concerned. As though, they are encouraging the sand suppliers to create troubles for them.
Old AT Road looks like an offshoot of NH-37 from Dharapur Chariali point towards Palasbari. At Garal another road gas an offshoot that connects Old AT Road with Lokapriya Gopinath Bordoloi International (LGBI) Airport. Thus the three road stretches – the stretch of AT Road from Dharapur to Garal, the road connecting AT Road with LGBI Airport and the NH-37 stretch from Dharapur to LGBI Airport – form a delta. Old AT Road is often used by people going to the airport so as to escape huge traffic snarls on NH-37. This apart, it is the lifeline for the people residing along it up to Palasbari. However, a common sight in the Dharapur-Majali stretch of AT Road is heaps of sand on either of its sides. The heaped sand often covers half of the width of the road, let alone its portion meant for pedestrians’ use. Those doing business with sand thus directly infringe upon people’s right to use the road freely. However, the general public in the area seldom protest the menace. Those in authority also look the other way when this infringement of people’s rights to use the road takes place right under their nose.
Old AT Road remains too busy at night when dumpers carrying silt from the river bed (Brahmaputra) and earth from paddy fields ply on it, throughout. The dumpers also leave behind silt and earth on the road as though to create troubles for the users of the road. As if to cap it all, the road has no streetlights. Thus traveling on the road at night is not free from the danger of accidents. Sand suppliers often leave bulk of sand on the road without cleaning properly. This makes the road sandy and slushy when it rains. During the dry season dust storms make road users shed tears.
Only God knows what fate awaits the users of the road!