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Dispur's dirty underbelly

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  21 Sep 2015 12:00 AM GMT

Under-development driving Dimoria locals to Meghalaya's arms

Our Correspondent

Dimoria, Sept 20: Education for them is possible only through the ME school established in 1988 which is yet to be provincialized; health-care for them is self-administered with the medicil herbs scattered all around the verdant locale; connectivity is tenuous at best through the faint sigls from mobile towers on the Meghalaya side of the border; and development a cruel joke with broken down roads unmotorable during the rains.

For some 10,000 inhabitants of 13 villages along the Assam-Meghalaya border in Dimoria, being a part of the prestigious Dispur legislative assembly has been of little help. Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi's 'developed Assam' slogan has not reached these villages in the 14 years he has been at the helm. No government scheme has made its way to these ramshackle villages.

Power supply is as good as non-existent, while the Ampri river is the only source of drinking water for the villagers.

However, on the other side of the Ampri river - which is the inter-state border, the scene is contrasting. The Meghalaya government is laying down new roads, providing drinking water facilities and even setting up banks.

"Three three key roads in the area - Tegheria-Markang, Magursila-Pesamsar and Markang-Pithagog - are deteriorating by the day. They become unmotorable during monsoons. People also avoid travelling during night. You can imagine the inconvenience caused while ferrying patients," rues Dilip Phangso, secretary of Magursila Yuva Sangha, a local organization.

"In absence of a health centre, villagers are dependent on medicil herbs found abundantly in the area. The nearest health centre is the Sopur Civil Hospital, about 20 km away from here. People rarely take that option due to the poor road condition," he said.

Villagers got to see MLA Akon Bora and his predecessors only on the eve of elections, when they came with loads of promises.

"The elected representatives have done virtually nothing for these areas. People only see them during elections," rues Phangso.

In fact, the thirteen villages - Markrang, Magursila, Bandargog, Dandarai, Pithagog, Pesamsaru, Barkasarang, Kalangpur, Kasangmola, Arlokong, Marlak, Panikanti and Khongadok - are preparing to be part of Meghalaya.

"We have got nothing from the Assam government. We are now contemplating to be a part of Meghalaya. We feel we will be looked after better by the Meghalaya government," said a village elder.

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