Anantnag: Twelve years on, the authorities are yet to take up the widening of a 2-km left out stretch of the national highway in south Kashmir’s Anantnag town leading to frequent traffic jams.
An official said that the work on Donipawa-Sherpora-JanglatMandi stretch falling under Kishtwar-Sinthan- Kokernag-Anantnag NH-244 road project had been almost shelved even as the preliminary Detailed Project Report (DPR) stands prepared.
“The Border Roads Organisation (BRO), which was initially the executing agency for the project, had already notified the road and done its valuation in 2007. However, the national highway authorities that took over did not carry forward the process,” he said.
The official said that the government was now constructing a bypass along the banks of Aaripat, a tributary of the River Jhelum.
However, locals said it would not ease the problem of traffic congestion either.
“Most of the brick kilns and educational institutes fall on this stretch. So, it is hardly going to serve any purpose,” said KausarMajidDalal of Deva Colony, JanglatMandi.
“Almost everyone here is completely in favour of the road widening but the authorities are not taking up the work on this stretch for reasons unknown,” said Rayees Ahmad Haqani, another resident.
He said that the narrow road stretch witnesses massive traffic jams, causing immense hardships to the passengers and making the movement of pedestrians difficult.
“The road connects Kokernag and Shangus tehsils, and several tourist spots to Anantnag town. It also leads to the Government Medical College, Anantnag hospital and makes patients suffer,” said Khurshid Ahmad Wani.
He said that the government should immediately remove the bottlenecks and direct the concerned agency to take up the work immediately.
“The road widening will give a fillip to the trade in the area,” Wani said.