By Monica Golmei
IMPHAL, May 24: The new Thambuthong over the Imphal River connecting the twin districts of Imphal was hurriedly opened for public as one of the vital diversions after the closure of Sanjenthong Bridge.
However, the roads that lead to the bridge are in a terrible state with construction materials still lying near the road.
The bridge was thrown open to the public in view of easing the heavy volume of traffic at Minuthong and Thong-Ahanbi as Sanjenthong will be closed for public until the proposed four lane bridge gets completed.
Talking to IFP, ex-commissioner GA Ravichandra of Brahmapur Nahabam said, “The sudden plan taken up for the construction of Sanjenthong by the government of Manipur has given multiple problems not only to the commuters but also to the residents, particularly those who are residing at Brahamapur Nahabam.”
The ex-commissioner laments that after the opening of the Thambuthong, there has been manifold increased in traffic volume. With the roads left unrepaired without the necessary black topping, the dusts from it are causing health hazards to the residents of the nearby areas. We have witnessed frequent accidents taking place because of heavy congestions, over and above the bad road condition with full of rubbles covered by the dusts creates more difficulties during the rainfall.
Ravichandra further maintained that the hardship faced by the people is because of the projects being taken up by the government without proper planning. He further said that the personnel of Village Defense Force (VDF) posted on the bridge are source of added nuisance. He said instead of carrying out their responsibility of giving security and assistance to the people, they take money from the Rickshaw pullers and auto Rickshaw drivers which in turn creates chaos to the commuters.
Fuming over the behavior of the VDF, G.A Sanatomba, Secretary of Dharmalaya Social Welfare Centre said, “We have asked the forces not to burden the commuters by unnecessarily frisking them and taking money, but they (VDF) still continue with their shameless act”.
Dharmalaya Social Welfare Centre, Brahmapur Nahabam Imphal will be organising a meeting on May25 and a memorandum to the MLAs concerned will be submitted, the secretary added. Sanatomba further said that if the Government fails to look into the matter there will be strong agitations from people who are residing in and around the Thambuthong area.
A nearby shopkeeper N. Samson speaking to IFP said the Thambuthong is not even officially inaugurated by the Government and due to over loading of it by big vehicles on it, major mishap could happen any time with the present chaotic traffic.
Samson strongly appealed that the authority concerned should look into the matter and not to give more burdens to the commuters and local people.