By R Lester Makang
UKHRUL, January 29: While the denizens of Ukhrul district find it convenient to direct their ire toward the Public Works Department (PWD), Ukhrul Division for the poor condition of circular roads and all approach roads to the town`™s main road which is also in a bad shape, the officials of the department have a different story to tell.
Soon after the wet, swampy season, Ukhrulites are once again greeted with the typical cloud of dust with the onset of dry wintry season as most part of the so-called black-topped surface of the town`™s roads have worn out sooner than expected, or for that matter, within a year of repairing or re-laying the same.
The task of maintaining the town`™s main road which has developed innumerable cracks and pot holes within a year of re-laying has been undertaken by the Border Roads Organization (BRO) along with that of national and state highways including Ukhrul-Imphal, Ukhrul-Jessami and Ukhrul-Kamjong roads since some years back, according to officials of PWD, Ukhrul.
PWD, Ukhrul division still retains the task of maintaining the twin Circular roads at the East and West of the district headquarters and a slew of approach roads within the town areas as well as in the interiors like Awang Kasom, Chingai, Ngaingu, Somdal, Tusom, Huimi and Kachai including the Imphal-Ukhrul old road via Lamlang Gate in western Ukhrul, disclosed the officials adding that the condition of all these roads has been deteriorating for the last many years rendering them almost unmotorable at various points.
`But what else could we do since the State government has not sanctioned any fund for repairing these roads for the past 3/4 years,` lamented the officials.
Citing financial crunch, the government is not releasing any fund for consecutive 3/4 years, they said before adding that at least Rs 1 crore would be required to repair some of the important roads under its jurisdiction.
Worst still, there seems to be no light at the end of the tunnel as the department staff said that there has been no response whatsoever even after the department apprise the three local MLAs of the district about the matter.
`We are rendered idle and made to attend office here merely for namesake without having any task to do for want of fund and we do not see any positive sign in near future either,` they added.