Simkot waiting for national road network

Simkot (Humla), June 8: Simkot, the district headquarters of Humla, is waiting for its link to the national road network.

Although roads are constructed under the Karnali Corridor and budget allocated to connect Simkot with the national network within the current fiscal year, the district headquarters is still isolated from the national roads in the absence of bridge over the Dojam Karnali River in Kharpunath rural municipality.

According to Bel Bahadur Nepali, Planning Chief of the Hilsa-Simkot Road Project, the construction of bridge fails to gain a pace, thereby delaying expansion of roads in the mountainous district.

Humla is the district in the highest altitude of the country with its villages lying at about 3,000 to 5,000 metres above sea level.

While hardly a month is left for the current fiscal year to be over, the construction of the bridge does not show any sign of progress, lamented Nepal, ranting that dillydally on the part of the construction company had impeded the project.

Road is expanded up to Kharpunath rural municipality in the district but in lack of a bridge connecting the rural municipality with the district headquarters, Simkot remains aloof.

Locals are facing grave inconvenience, he grieved. According to him, a hot water spring was spotted in the place where a pillar was being built for the bridge towards the east of the construction site. Construction works were halted for nearly eight months while water entered inside the pillar, he recalled.

At present, they were discussing whether to build a bridge in the place with hot water spring. Coordination with the construction company is underway for the same, but to no avail, he rued.

It would take at least four years if decision is taken to forward activities to construct the bridge.

The locals have been demanding to construct a temporary bailey bridge over the Dojam Karnali for the time being to ease movement, saying it would be huge relief.

Project Chief Nepali mentioned that though Ministry of Physical Infrastructures and Transport and Department of Road had made verbal agreements for the construction of a bailey bridge, it was not forwarded either.

People’s representatives and civil society in the district had visited the Ministry of Physical Infrastructures and Transport and Department of Road time and again for the construction of the bridge, but in vain.

The Nepali Army has been making preparation to give a final shape to the road by cutting down the Chhare cliff from Dullikuna to Lalibagar under the Karnali Corridor. Vehicular movement is allowed for four hours along the road section daily. The national road network would be connected up to Hilsa via Humla headquarters if a bridge is constructed there. (RSS)

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