SHILLONG: Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma on Sunday inspected the damage caused due by heavy rains to NH-06 in Lumshnong in the East Jaintia Hills district.
This National Highway connects Meghalaya to three other Northeastern States - Tripura, Mizoram and Manipur - and the damage caused is extensive. The single line railway route, which links these States to the rest of the country, also remained cut off for the last 38 days.
The damage to NH-06 has caused huge inconvenience to people of Tripura, Mizoram, Manipur and the southern part of Assam, affecting ferrying of essential goods, food grains and fuel, besides passengers.
"The restoration work is a huge task. The team has been directed to expedite the restoration work of this very crucial road," the Chief Minister said.
Conrad K Sangma also inspected the diversion road via Star Cement premises in Lumshnong, which is the alternate route being used for light vehicles to pass through while restoration works for NH-06 takes place.
According to a Government official, over 1,000 goods-laden trucks are stranded along both sides of the road from Assam to Meghalaya.
The Chief Minister also interacted with truck drivers and stranded people along damaged NH-06 in Lumshnong.
"We are standing by everyone through these challenging times. We have instructed the Deputy Commissioner to ensure supply of food items to the stranded people," Sangma said.
The Chief Minister also held a review meeting with the Deputy Commissioner, Abhilash Baranwal and officials of the district to assess the damages caused in the past few days.
Sangma said that at the review meeting he instructed the team to take necessary action to restore the roads and ensure supply of essential commodities.
Speaking to mediapersons after the review meeting, he said that he has written a letter to Union Home Minister Amit Shah and asked for a support of Rs 300 crore from the Government of India.
"We have given a very preliminary assessment of the damages in terms of the agriculture and infrastructure damages," the Chief Minister said.
Sangma also informed that the Union Home Minister called him up on Saturday evening and asked the extent of the damages and the current reports at the grass root level.
Shah has assured him that he will be sending a Central team to assess the entire overall situation and the damages caused. Sangma will be going to Mawsynram on Monday and on Tuesday he will be travelling to the Garo Hills to assess the situation arising out of the rains.
During the inspection, the Chief Minister was accompanied by Home Minister Lahkmen Rymbui.
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