Dear sleepy J&K Government: 50 villages will soon be disconnected from Civilization

Puneet Gupta


 

What happens when the government works at its own pace? A simpler way of rephrasing this can be what happens when the government does not work? Let us get into that zone of questioning the government’s utterly slow and negligent response to a massive problem.

I can begin with building the scenario for you to understand the depth of this problem.

Let me first introduce you to the name Phallain Mandal (pronounced Ph-laa-aen Man-daal) . Half of you would not know it which is a sad state of affairs in itself. Phallain Mandal is a place beyond Satwari and if you go further beyond, you have a cluster of civilization that populates about 50 villages. What is important to consider here is the fact that civilization means humans and anyone human is important along with other forms of flora and fauna.

Now consider this.

Phallain Mandal is about five kilometres from Satwari. It was earlier connected to Satwari through a NIKKI TAWI bridge that was washed away in September floods. So that is one bridge out of the picture. About now, Phallain Mandal is connected to Satwari by a make-shift bridge that the Army built. Thanks, very much Indian army, Salute!

You can see the problem in these pictures.

Phallain Mandal Bridge
There is no warning sign at the beginning of the bridge. A person riding in the dark can actually meet with a serious accident
Phallain Mandal Bridge
The populace disconnected in monsoons will have to travel over 30 Kms to connect to Satwari. Satwari is actually only 6 Kms away.

 

Monsoons are about five months away and all of you know that our dear Tawi fills up during the season. All of us go to the bridge and have nice time. However, it is not a very nice time for the people from Phallain Mandal and beyond. The make-shift bridge that connects them to Satwari will submerge under water during the rainy season.

The Problem that monsoons will create:

Phallain Mandal
Make shift Bridge Rahat Setu allows only one four-wheeler at a time leaving a long queue of vehicles waiting on both ends and thus wastage of time.

 

It is safe to conclude that the general populace from villages does not have many rich folk. Villages mostly have people who travel using the scarce public transport that connects these villages to any city area. Once the make-shift bridge submerges in monsoons, the people of about 50 villages will have to travel over 30 excruciating kilometres to travel to Satwari which for most villages is a little over just 6 kilometres.

Instead of going straight to Satwari, these people have to go first to Bhagwati Nagar via a broken track (which means painfully slow traffic) that most of you have no idea about to then the fourth bridge and then to Asia and back to Satwari. 30 Kilometers is a safe guess, the distance should be longer.

Not only does that mean spending a bomb for the daily travellers, but the many extra hours that these people will have to waste to simply go to Satwari.

The Problems that these people face currently:

  1. The state government is not doing anything to save these people’s time and money for starters. This translates to nothing is being done to initiate the building of a new bridge. There has been no repair for even the older bridge for Six months now and it only throws light on the ignorance of our government.
  2. Also, the alternative track to Jammu city, via Karnaile Chak is so broken, that the normal time to commute to Bhagwati Nagar is extended by over Half an Hour. The passengers from Satwari have to change two city matadors spending almost twice the fare which is by any means unfair to them simply when these people have to work really hard to earn their livelihoods.
  3. The make-shift bridge does not allow for heavy vehicles and so any ration has to come via the Bhagwati Nagar – Karnaile Chak broken route. Heavy vehicles simply avoid coming to this area and as a result many a time daily-usage items are not available.

The simple solution – Government needs to WORK

Five months is too short a time to build a bridge many officials in the government will say. But the construction of the new bridge was sanctioned so many months ago. If the concerned authorities simply take up the matter on top priority, this bridge can actually be finished before the monsoons unleash their fury.

But of course, our state does not have the funds and the treasury is filled with air and dust is the excuse that the government is going to use when people get angry and ask questions.

Dear, people of Phallain Mandal and 50 other villages, you should lose hope and resort to being disconnected from the civilization. Our government was in a slumber for a long, long time. Right now they are busy suspending those who did not work properly. When will the bridge construction actually start, even Lord Almighty has no idea.

PICS BY: SANDEEP

 

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