20 years on, Bandipora-Gurez road widening in limbo
The Bandipora-Gurez road widening project which was approved in 1999 is yet to be executed even as the road condition is worsening.
Sources said that in 1999 the road widening from Sonerwaniin Bandipora to Kabul Gali in Tulail area of Gurez was approved to improve theroad condition, however, the project has not been executed yet.
The road is being maintained by the Beacon right fromSonerwani to Kabul Gali in Gurez, however, the land acquisition for thewidening of the road was to be done by the district administration.
An official said that 512 Kanals of land was to be acquiredfor the widening of the road which includes state, forest, and private land aswell, but till date, only 101 Kanals have been acquired for which just Rs 22 lakhhave been utilized out of the total Rs 4.49 crore approved for landacquisition.
He said that the project was approved when districtBandipora was with Sopore sub-division and the funds released for road wideningproject were deposited with the then SDM Sopore.
A Beacon official said the existing road width at someplaces is just 3.5 meters while as the clear road width should be approximately7.4 meters which include drainage for channelizing water to prevent the roadfrom getting damaged.
"For blacktopping of the road the width should beapproximately 5.8 meters, however, the existing road width is less than thenormal length which is why the road condition worsens every winter due to heavysnowfall," he said.
Sources said the road widening was to be done in two phases,first from Sonerwani to Dawar, having a road length of 84 kilometers and thenfrom Dawar to Kabul Gali in Tulail sector, having a road length of 72kilometers.
Locals told Greater Kashmir that the condition of the roadis worse from Razdan Pass up to Kanzalwan as the road has developed hugepotholes due to lack of maintenance.
Deputy Commissioner Bandipora, Shahbaz Ahmad Mirza did notrespond to repeated calls from this reporter.
Officer Commanding, 56 RCC Beacon, APS Khaira said they havebeen sending reminders to the authorities concerned for executing the roadwidening in order to achieve the desired results and proper maintenance of theroad but nothing has been done so far.
He said that for proper maintenance of the road "we need to havethe desired road width".
"We are not able to execute things well because we don'thave the desired road width, however, on public demand we have startedblacktopping the road from two sides. We have started blacktopping from Tragbalmacadam plant towards Razdan Pass and from Dawar macadam plant towards Tulail."