Ganderbal: The residents of Guzhama in Ganderbal District accused Jammu and Kashmir Projects Construction Corporation (JKPCC) for failing to complete the under-construction bridge in their area, resulting in severe hardships to the inhabitants.
The villagers in the area say its construction began in 2011, but the inhabitants of Guzhama still crave to see it completed and make commuting possible.
The residents said that the bridge, sanctioned a decade ago, connects several villages like Khaar Bagh, Batwina, Wakura, Khanpora, Batpora and many others in the area with Sheikh Zoo and other villages.
“The bridge could have significantly shortened the distance between several villages and helped commuters reach their respective destinations in the shortest-possible time,” local Sarpanch Mohammad Sultan Mir said.
He also said that 10 years after the bridge was sanctioned only the pillars had been built.
The locals said that the bridge would have not only connected them to Srinagar- Jammu National Highway but also cut their travel time to the highway considerably. “The bridge would have reduced our travel time by an hour. Right now we either have to cross the river by boats or have to take longer routes, through Batwina and Waskura to reach the national highway and it takes us more than an hour to reach there,” said Momin Mir, a local resident. “The villagers have been requesting the concerned authorities to speed up the work but to no avail,” he further added.
“At a time when Government is trying to introduce railways to join districts of the valley, we the people of Guzhama are still lagging behind and we are compelled to risk our lives to cross the river,” Javaid Ahmad, a local student said.
He also said that in these modern times we use boat to cross the river and sometimes it gives scope to untoward incidents.
The Jammu and Kashmir Projects Construction Corporation has left the bridge costing nearly Rs 29 crore incomplete and we are not able to understand why the authorities are not passing any tender to complete this bridge,” a villager said.
Deputy General Manager JKPCC Ganderbal unit Farooq Ahmad Bhat said that the amount we received to construct the bridge were utilised but due to shortage of funds the work was stopped.
“Once we get the pending amount from the higher ups, I assure you that the bridge will be completed within stipulated time. In this regard we have approached the higher authorities for the remaining funds and hopefully this year we will start the construction work again,” Bhat said.
Meanwhile the local people have sought the immediate intervention of Lieutenant Governor, Manoj Sinha and Chief Engineer JKPCC to look into the matter.