In ERA-R&B blame game, suburb road widening project abandoned

Srinagar, Oct 9: Here’s more bad news for the commuters waiting for a respite from traffic jams on the busy Ram Bagh –Chana Pora road.  The prestigious road-widening project, aimed to deconge...

Srinagar, Oct 9: Here's more bad news for the commuters waiting for a respite from traffic jams on the busy Ram Bagh –Chana Pora road.  The prestigious road-widening project, aimed to decongest the traffic on the suburb street has been abandoned.
  The three-odd KM road stretch has been virtually orphaned with both Economic Reconstruction Agency (ERA) and the R&B department disowning it to "avoid chaos and huge funding."
  The road had to be expanded from the present two-lane to four-lane.
  While the ERA says it has transferred the road stretch to R&B, the latter throws back the ball in the ERA court.
The ERA excuse
  ERA says the road, which often witnesses traffic jams, has been dropped from its upgradation plan to avoid "delay and huge funding".
  According to the ERA's project incharge, for Transport, Nazir Ahmed Rather, the Ram Bagh-Chana Pora stretch was on the plan but got dropped soon before the work was allotted.
   "The route from Ram Bagh to Chana Pora has huge concentration of residential and commercial complexes on the both sides of the road. If we had included the area it would have taken us years for revenue department to make the list and negotiate the settlements," Nazir said.
  Another official pleaded that it would require "huge funding".
  Earlier, the project was slated to start from Ram Bagh to Chahar-e-Sharief in central Kashmir.
  But the officials say as the Ram Bagh belt would require removal of hundreds of residential and commercial complexes from both sides of the road, it was chopped.
  As per the ERA, the upgradation now starts Bagh-e-Mehtab onwards, which is a kilometer away from Chana Pora on way to Charar-e-Sharief.
  According to Rather, for now the road stretch from Ram Bagh to Chana Pora has been handed over to R&B department.
 R&B plea
  The R&B chief engineer, Muhammad Shafi said: " The road is with ERA. We are not responsible for it. I will talk to the ERA people about why they are issuing wrong statements."

"The route from Ram Bagh to Chana Pora has huge concentration of residential and commercial complexes on the both sides of the road. If we had included the area it would have taken us years for revenue department to make the list and negotiate the settlements."

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