AWANTIPORA — Even after 15 years, a vital bridge on river Jehlum at Dogripora in Awantipora area of south Kashmir’s Pulwama district is awaiting completion.

Locals said that the foundation of the bridge was laid in the year 2006 during the PDP-Congress regime, however, 15 years have passed but not even 40 per cent of the construction work has been completed yet.

Shahid Ahmad, a resident of Dogripora village, said that over the years, many people have drowned while crossing Jehlum through a boat in absence of the bridge.

“Such accidents wouldn’t have happened had this bridge been completed on time,” he said, adding that this bridge would connect dozens of villages with the highway at Pujteng Sethar and over 50 villages with railway station Panzgam Pulwama.

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Shahid said that the project is under JKPCC and every year they hardly work for 15 to 20 days and leave it halfway “due to which we are facing a lot of problems”.

Locals said that they have knocked the doors of every authority in this regard but on the ground, nothing happened. “We have met Governors and their advisors as well, who assured that work will start soon, however, their promises also proved hoax on the ground,” they said.

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Deputy Managing Director JKPCC, Er Masood Ahmad said the bridge was kept in languishing projects and got administrative approval and technical sanction recently.

“The material is being brought by the contractor from outside valley and in coming days, the work will start on the bridge,” he said, adding, “The project will be completed up to March 2022.”

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