Work on Qamarwari- Norbagh Bridge goes on at snail’s pace

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Srinagar—Despite the pass­ing of seven years, the Jammu and Kashmir Roads and Building (R&B) department has failed to complete Noorbagh Qamarwari Bridge here.

Strong resentment is brewing among locals against inordinate delay in completion of the project.

Habibullah, a local resident told KNS that the work on the project was started in 2011. “The government had assured us that the bridge would be completed in four years. In view of impor­tance of the bridge, people living on two sides of Jhelum in the area extended cooperation to the authorities. Ironically, they have failed to complete the project within stipulated time,” he said.

Locals fear that due to snail’s pace of work on the project, the construction of the bridge will be delayed. The project has al­ready missed several deadlines. After public pressure, authori­ties had re-fixed the deadline as December 2017 “We feel dis­appointed to find that work on the bridge has been most often stalled and now is going on at snail’s pace. This bridge is un­der construction from past eight years,” said Mohammad Yousf, a local of Qamarwari.

The locals urged government to direct concerned authori­ties to ensure completion of the bridge before the deadline.

“It has become a routine for some authorities to initiate a project, construct some pillars or plinth and then leave it half­way,” said, another local.

“It is because of non-serious­ness of officials that Kashmir is losing race on various projects. It is unfortunate that government always extends deadlines rather than making officials account­able for their failure to complete projects on time,” said one of the shopkeepers of Norbagh.

The construction of 127 metre long bridge was started in 2011. It missed its first deadline in 2014. Later Chief Minister Meh­booba Mufti promised that the bridge would be thrown open by March 2017. The deadline was later extended to December 2017, which was missed again.

Officials in the R&B, de­partment said that due to non-availability of site and encroachments in the area, the construction process was delayed. “Now the construc­tion process is going on in full swing and we are hopeful that the Bridge will be completed in the current year,” one of the officials of the R&

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