Awantipora, Nov 17: Even after an elapse of 15 years, two vital bridges on river Jhelum in Awantipora area of South Kashmir’s Pulwama district are awaiting completion.
The two bridges which are awaiting completion include one at Dogripora and other at Reshiepora area of Awantipora.
Locals from Dogripora said that the foundation of the bridge was laid in 2006 during PDP-Congress regime, however, since then 15 years have passed and even 50 percent hasn’t been completed yet.
Mudasir Ahmad, a resident of Dogripora village, said that over the years, many people have drowned while crossing Jhelum through a boat in absence of this bridge.
“Such accidents wouldn’t have happened had this bridge been completed on time,” he said, adding that this bridge would connect dozens of villages with national highway at Pujteng Sethar and over 50 villages with railway station Panzgam Pulwama.
Mudasir said that the project is under JKPCC and every year they hardly work for 15 to 20 days and left it, “due to which locals are facing a lot of problems.”
Shahid Ahmad, another local, said that they have knocked the doors of every authority but on ground nothing happened.
“We have met the Governor and their advisors as well who assured us that work will start soon, however, their promises like officials also proved a hoax on ground,” he said.
Locals from Reshiepora said that the foundation of the bridge was laid in 2007 during PDP-Congress regime, however, since then 14 years have passed but 60 percent hasn’t been completed yet.
Ghulam Nabi, a local Auqaf member of Reshipora village, said that in absence of a bridge, they have to go around 10 kilometers to reach a highway which otherwise is just half a kilometer away from them provided the bridge is completed.
“If this bridge is completed, this will connect Tral area with Shahoora area in Pulwama and shorten their distance by kilometers,” Nabi said.
Another local said he donated his land for the construction of the bridge but since then over a decade has passed but nothing has been done on ground.
“I order to reach school or college, our children have to cross the river Jhelum by boat which could prove dangerous anytime,” the local said.
Locals said that they have knocked the doors of every authority in this regard but on ground nothing happened.
They said that there is a transport service in the area and it can only be started when the bridge is completed.
“Now officials are claiming that there is a change in the proposal. Why it wasn’t done for the last 13 years and now since 2019 work has been completely put on halt,” locals said.
Locals once again requested higher ups to look into the matter and resume work on this bridge so that locals can heave a sigh of relief.
Deputy Managing Director JKPCC Masood Ahmad Gagoo said that there is change in the proposal of the Reshiepora bridge as it will now be a truss bridge instead of plate bridge.
Gagoo said that file is lying before higher officials and once it will be approved, work will be again started on it.
“The work on Dogripora bridge has already started and it will be completed next year,” he said.