Dadeldhura locals lend hands to construct long-delayed road
Oct 8, 2014-
The construction of 25 kilometre Anarkholi-Dewal road connecting more than a dozen VDCs of Dadeldhura and Baitadi districts has gained momentum at the initiative of the locals. Although records show that more than Rs 100 million has been spent from state coffers for the construction of the road initiated 30 years ago, only a three kilometre track has been opened to the public till date.
However, locals have opened nine kilometre track on the first phase of the much delayed road at the cost of Rs 2.5 million, of which Rs 1.6 million was collected through donation and Rs 900,000 on loan. Marvelling at the completion of the first phase, local Daljeet Thagunna said that the donation drive was still on and they have plans to complete the construction work within this fiscal year. Meanwhile, stating that some locals of the Samauji VDC had obstructed the construction of the road, local Ramdutta Bhatta said construction work on 16 kilometre of the road till Guwadi had been paved after leaders of all VDCs had jointly decided to construct the road through local initiative as well as investment.
“Although the budget for the construction of the road was allocated every year, due to financial irregularities committed by the construction companies in collusion with Division Road Office, construction work never moved past the initial three kilometre track opened to the public,” complained local Janak Aidi.
“Over the years, construction work had been delayed in the name of protecting community forest and religious sites like temples time and again,” Aidi said.
Moreover, after locals started constructing the road through their own initiative, for the first time in years three lawmakers from Dadeldhura and Baitadi have reached the construction site and interacted with the locals. In an interaction programme organised by the locals, one of the lawmakers, Damodar Bhandari of Baitadi, assured that he will try to draw the attention of the government towards the project in order to turn into a priority project.
Stating that the efforts of the locals have been exemplary till now, Bhandari said that this is a clear case of lack of accountability in the government.
“We had reached the doorsteps of government representatives many times, but after we took the initiative to construct the road, they have started coming to the village,” said local Bhoj Bahadur Aidi. Meanwhile, stating that the roads should have been completed through the funds disbursed by the government for the project long ago, Bhoj Bahadur said that the pain of having to construct the road through money collected from donations and the sheer apathy of the government towards the region cannot be forgotten easily.
Published: 08-10-2014 11:01