Dusty roads make life difficult for the residents of SalyanThough the Division Road Office allocates millions of rupees for road repair work every year, the roads in the district are in dire conditions.
Road sections of Sallibazar-Chaurjahari, Chaurjahari-Ragechaur and Tharmare-Darma in Salyan district are always covered in billowing clouds of dust.
In the monsoons, these rural roads are usually blocked by landslides or are too muddy to plough through. During the rest of the year, these roads are enveloped in a thick veil of dust, making it tough for vehicles to pass through and locals to live.
Nirmal Rana, a local man of Tribeni, said that they cannot breathe while passing through the roads. He said, “Many of us get sick by the time we reach our destinations. It’s become like a daily routine.”
Though the Division Road Office allocates millions of rupees to repair the road every year, there are many potholes along the road section. Lok Bahadur Budha, a local man of Chaurjahari, said that it has been more than 15 years that vehicles have started to ply along 41km of Sallibazar-Chaurjahari, yet no maintenance work has been carried out till date. He said, “None of the authorities has taken the initiative to upgrade this road.”
Because of the state of the road, locals in these areas are living in poor health conditions, with the air pollution in the area crossing dangerous levels. Locals of Sunauli, Tribeni, Shankapipal, Garche, Netabazaar and Ragechaur say they face difficulties performing day-to-day activities. “The surrounding area is always covered in clouds of dust because of the bad road condition,” said Nanda Kumar Sahu of Neta bazaar. According to him, most of the locals living near the roads are suffering from respiratory diseases, common cold and stomach ache due to the excessive presence of dust particles in the air.
Khimlal Budha, a transport entrepreneur, said that drivers too face problems while driving along the damaged road every day. “Often vehicles get damaged on these dirt roads, and passengers are stranded for hours on end. Most of the rural roads in the district are not in a good condition,” said Budha.