Repair work yet to begin on damaged Narayangadh-Muglin roadSome sections of the road stretch started to sink while the upgradation work of the Narayangadh-Muglin project was underway two years ago.
Repair work is yet to begin on the damaged sections of the Narayangadh-Muglin road, an arterial roadway linking Kathmandu to the country’s southern plains.
Some sections of the road stretch started to sink while the upgradation work of the Narayangadh-Muglin project was underway two years ago. The upgraded road developed cracks and sank in three places along the 36-km stretch.
The upgraded road has suffered damage in Satra Kilo, Simaltal and Bhalukhola areas, according to the Narayangadh-Muglin Road Project. Engineer Shiva Khanal, the information officer at the project, said cracks started to appear on the road section in Simaltal area while the road suffered damage in Satra Kilo and Bhalukhola in June 2018.
“Around 40 metres of the road was damaged in Satra Kilo while 70 metres road was damaged in Bhalukhola area. The road started developing cracks in Simaltal recently,” he said.
Inspector Dayakrishna Bhatta, chief of District Traffic Police Office in Chitwan, warned of the risk that the damaged road sections pose to vehicles. “The damaged road affects the traffic along the busy road. But more concerning is how drivers, unaware of the damage, speed along the road sections at night,” he said. “This road stretch will turn more dangerous if the damaged sections are not repaired soon.”
Driving along the Narayangadh-Muglin road in the Satra Kilo area poses the highest risk as half of that stretch is riddled with potholes and the other half hangs onto a cliff by the Trishuli river, Bhatta warned.
The Narayangadh-Muglin road is a lifeline to the national capital which accounts for 90 percent of the country’s total international trade traffic. More than 10,000 vehicles move along the road stretch daily, according to the District Traffic Police in Chitwan.
The Department of Roads is preparing to invite tenders for repair works for the third time after two previous calls failed to attract interest from contractors. “We invited tenders but didn’t receive any applications. We don’t know the reason for contractors’ reluctance to take up this repair project,” said Rupak Bhandari, a divisional engineer at the Development Cooperation Implementation Division under the department.
The upgradation project of the 33-km Narayangadh-Muglin road had begun in 2015 with Rs3 million aid from the World Bank. The road’s width was expanded up to 11 metres from the previous 5.5 metres.