Bridge completed without approach road

People’s woes

Special Correspondent

Silchar, Feb 22: There has been widespread discontent among the general public of Salchapra-Tapang block over the incomplete approach road to Ghagra bridge that connects it with Sriko Manikpur PWD road. Articulating this grievance of the common people, the All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS), Democratic Youth Front of India (DYFI) and All Assam Nirman Sramik Union (AANSU) along with Tapang Block Anchalik Committee (TBAC) have jointly submitted a memorandum on the issue to the Deputy Commissioner of Cachar last Tuesday. The memorandum is, in fact, a repeat of the earlier ones that were presented before him on March 18, 2015, March 27, 2015 and again on January 30, 2017.

 Despite these memos, no effective action has been taken. The suffering people of the vast areas have been hoping against hope that the work of the incomplete approach bridge will be completed. The bridge over river Ghagra was completed three years ago. Without the approach road, this linking bridge has become virtually redundant an of no use. No individual or any vehicle can move through it. It is to be noted here that around 20 to 25 thousand people inhabit in and around the areas under 8 GPs of Salchapra block use this road and bridge in their everyday life on various purposes.

 Besides, the bridge is also a connectivity to the town of Silchar where people in general have to come on their varied errands. Moreover, the bridge is the only means of communication for all the 8 GPs of Salchapra block. The school and college going students as well as elderly persons, in particular, have to make risky use of the bamboo structured bridge for their communication. There have been some accidents of concern also. The worst time comes during the rainy season when the flooded Ghagra, an offshoot of Chatla haor and fed by the backlash of Barak, takes a mecing form. This cuts off the communication for months.

 For the last three years after the completion of the bridge, PWD engaged contractor and his workers have been depositing sand and earth to build the approach road from time to time. This has been a fruitless and vain effort. An on the spot visit will show that there is presently no trace or indication of any earth having been deposited. The problem is further compounded by the fact that during their movement through this approach, children and older persons are often the victims of accident.

 With the coming to power of the new government led by BJP, hopes have been generated among the common people. Moreover, the PWD Minister, Parimal Shuklabaidya, is a person from this valley and he has pledged and virtually taken up the cudgel to improve the inter-valley communication system by repairing the roads, both in urban and rural areas, besides the highways. Considering the difficulties of the people of Salchapra-Tapang block, AIKS, DYFI, AANSU and TBAC have hammered on the Deputy Commissioner to ensure that the approach road is put to shape before the onset of monsoon.