KATHMANDU, Nov 28: 13 major roads of the valley are in complete disarray and ramshackle.
Bagmati Bridge-Arniko Highway
The Government of Nepal (GoN) in its financial year of 2015/16 had decided to widen the roads to 22 meters from its existing breadth. Sites were to be cleared accordingly but instead, the Road Department (RD) started opening tenders. There were disputes regarding compensation, certain areas also included historical buildings so the public protested which stalled the expansion drive.
The contractors made this the prime reason for not continuing with the upgrade and blacktopping of the road leaving them in a pitiful condition.
The Balkhu-Dakshinkali road is one such example. The widening and upgrading contract was given on June 3rd, 2015 to Bhimsen Bhandari. Given in the contract the project was supposed to complete by October 6th, 2017. Two years have passed since the contract expired but the road is still in a pathetic condition. The dust from the street has made life miserable for the people including many falling sick with respiratory illnesses.
The Dolahiti-Sunakothi-Chapagaun-Lele road that interconnects these places is hapless. A total of 8 kilometers, 3 kilometers of the road was to be made by businessman Sharda Adhikari who had received the contract on June 8th, 2016. Just a few more months are left for the contract to expire and there are no visible signs of repairs or upgrades.
Nakkhu-Bhainsepati-Bungmati road section is also in a similar state of decline. The contractor has derelict his duty and the citizens have to face pollution and dust. The contract was given to Ram Sharan Budathoki, Balkrishna Thapa and Hari Narayan Rauniyar.
The sections of the valley roads mentioned above are in grave situations of disrepair. The citizens belonging to these sections have now started protests against the contractors. The public has put photo images of contractors behind buses for their nonperformance and dereliction of duty. The people are resorting to the act of public shaming in order to gain attention and have the work completed which has been long overdue.
(Photo Kamalmani Pokharel for Reporters Nepal)