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It’s only happened in Bihar – dilapidated roads including National Highway (NH) now prompted many Face Book and WhatsApp users for interesting posts. Deputy chief minister, Bihar recently compelled to twit his clarification related to such a post in social media about the dilapidated NH-80 which passes through Bhagalpur is laying in mess. The post got viral in social media and the minister had to contradict it while claiming that the picture stretch of NH-80 passing through Kahalgaon-Pirpainty which got viral in social media, was old picture while the road is repaired recently.
Visit to the border of Jharkhand at Mirjachouki, hardly nearly 90 km east of Bhagalpur district headquarters, on NH-80, one could easily realize the truth. Government’s seriousness related to roads, could easily be exposed while traveling on this dilapidated roads with numerous big ditches filled with rain water in which the wheels of even big vehicles could easily vanished. Not only NH-80, almost all other roads in Bhagalpur are not fit even for walks, claims expert concerned.
Deputy chief minister in his twit tried to blame central government since NH-80 is falling under the latter’s description. Actually he tried to repeat the blame game which become a common phenomena in Bihar.
Interestingly, more than 15 months has passed after chief minister Nitish Kumar had reprimanded the road construction department (RCD) and national highway engineers for the poor road conditions in Bhagalpur, but nothing was done for the roads in pathetic conditions. It’s is to be mentioned here that during the visit of president of India to half-excavated site of Vikramshila Buddha Mahavihara in April last, all the roads were repaired in emergency works. But due to heavy traffic of heavy vehicles mostly carrying stone boulders and sands, the roads were damaged soon.
Nitish, during his visit to Bhagalpur in March last in reviewing meeting, had directed the RCD engineers to improve the condition of roads without much delay.
Kumar was told by residents and commercial vehicle owners, including truck owners, about the hellish civic and road conditions and narrated how it was extreme difficult to transport goods. They said roads, especially between Ghogha-Kahalgaon – Pirpainty, have large ditches full of rainwater and slush causing road accidents and jam for hours recurrently.
Earlier the truck owners’ association and residents submitted memorandum to officer concerned at Kahalgaon sub-division. In the wake of the memorandum, sub divisional officer, Kahalgaon directed the RCD and NH engineers to repair the roads and make them motorable. The Kahalgaon Truck Owners’ Association (KTOA) members also threatened to go on indefinite strike if immediate steps are not taken to improve the road conditions between Bhagalpur and Pirpainty.
Following the KTOA warning, the RCD/NH engineers made a survey of the NH-80 between Kahalgaon and Pirpainty and gave opinion for construction of PCC roads where waterlogging is rampant throughout the year or such parts which have soil problems. RCD/NH engineers were especially concerned about the wide and deep ditches on the stretch from km167 to km180 on NH-80, sources said.
Ironically, the NH-80 which connects neighbouring Jharkhand as well as Bengal, has also very important for the point of internal security of the country, laying in utter neglect, alleged Dilip Mishra, a senior BJP leader in the region. He alleged callousness on the part of public representatives and hostile attitude of the concerned engineers. “What initiatives Sadananad Singh, former speaker and present Congress MLA from Kahalgaon has taken so far for ensuring good roads for the people in his constituency?” asked Mishra. Singh was not available to talk with news5pm but his associates claimed that he repeatedly made the issue on the floor of the assembly regularly.
“We will be forced to go on indefinite strike and put road blockade on this stretch. See it is now impossible to play any vehicles including heavy commercial vehicles mainly for the mushrooming big ditches on NH-80 ” said KTOA members.
Kahalgaon SDO admitted that patches on NH-80 at many places are really bad and the RCD/NH officials have been apprised of the situation and the agitation threat by KTOA as well as the law and order problem that may crop up if they go on strike. He however hoped for starting of repairing work soon.
NH officials, on the other hand, referred that the present liability of repair and maintenance of existing stretch of NH-80 is under state RCD.
Blaming each other just for refusing the responsibilities among office concerned or the department concerned have become very common as per roads are concerned. On the other hand due to this situation, common people are getting effected badly. “It takes not less than 10 hours to reach Pirpainty, some 80 km from Bhagalpur district headquarters. Besides, due to transport problem, the prices of essential commodities are very high and many people like auto drivers etc lost income generating opportunities,” said Randhir Choudhary, a resident at Kahalgaon.