10 years on, Mandhir Gala-Panjnara road lies incomplete

Located in a far flung area surrounded by tall mountains in Kotranka tehsil of Rajouri district, around two thousand souls residing in Panjnara village await the completion of a road that was initially started in 1960s and later taken up as a regular project in 2009.

Highly placed sources within the public works (road and building department) department told Greater Kashmir: “The construction for Mandhir Gala to Panjnara road was started in 2009 at an estimated cost of Rs 196.8 lakhs. Initially, Rs 20.12 lakhs were also received by the department from the government.”

The foundation stone of the road was laid on October 24, 2009, by the former member legislative assembly, Choudhary Zulfkar Ali.

Sources said, “The total length of the road is 3.5 kilometers. Some portion of the work has been completed. This includes metalling of 1.5 kilometers and shingling of 2 kilometers. Only half-a-kilometer of the road has been made fair weather till now.”

The locals, including sarpanch from Dhar Sakri panchayat Ajaz Ahmed, alleged, “The road has become a goldmine for the concerned department now. In the month of March every year, some work is executed to show that some progress has been made.”

They further said that the project was formally started in 2009, but the actual construction started in 1960s.

“Around two thousand people from Panjnara village, where there is no other road connectivity, are awaiting the road completion. But the wait just does not end,” they said.

On being contacted, the office of executive engineer PWD, Rajouri, said that road project has been projected in JKIDFC under district plan in languishing scheme.