10-day ultimatum to NHAI for improvement of East West Corridor

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HT Correspondent

HAFLONG, June 14: Miffed with the apathetic attitude of the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) to improve the deplorable national highway (NH- 54 E) from Haflong to Harangajao, the people of Harangajao have served a 10-day ultimatum to the authorities for improvement of the road stretch.

In a memorandum submitted to the deputy commissioner of Dima Hasao through the officer-in-charge of Harangajao Police Station, the locals said they would go for an indefinite road and rail blockade if the authorities fail to start improvement work within 10 days.

The local expressed their grievances over deplorable road condition of NH 54 East corridor which connects Harangajao village with the district headquarter and Cachar district as well.

The memorandum said to non-stoppage of train except one passenger train the denizen have to mainly use the road for communication. It alleged that due to inadequate medical facilities patients have to go to Haflong or Silchar and have to bear the brunt of the horrible road condition despite risking their life. It also urged the DC to take action against the NHAI officials for their failure to maintain the road stretch.

“If the NHAI fails to do needful within ten days they will intensify agitation and block the NH 54 and train service as well at Harangajao for an indefinite period,” the memorandum said.

“The construction of BG has totally worried us, the previous MG line was better for us when it was in function. There no railway facilities at present due to non stoppage of all train except from a train (up and down). We cannot survive without connectivity with Silchar and Haflong.The NH 54 E is only life line for us to connect with Silchar and Haflong and rest of the country,” the memorandum further said.

“The NH-54 E is in a miserable condition. There is a death trap in every 10- 50 metres which compel us to risk our life every day while travelling through the road which we cannot  avoid it in any cases to meet challenges of our lives,” said a villager.

Meanwhile, Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal held a meeting with Union minister for road transport and highways Nitin Gadkar requesting him for early completion of NH projects in the state.

The chief minister stated due to slow-paced construction of several stretches of the national highways, people are facing a lot of difficulties and requested the Union minister’s intervention for expeditious completion of the several national highways of Assam including NH 54 E stretching from Ngrimbanglow to Harangjao in Dima Hasao district.

The chief minister also stated that due to slow paced construction of several stretches of National Highways, people are facing a lot of encumbrances, he also requested Gadkari for early construction of four-lane work from Balachera to Harangajao of NH 54 E under NHAI and proper maintenance of the existing stretch.

The contract of improvement of the stretch from Haflong to Ngrimbanglo of NH- 54 E was awarded to Ratna Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd at the cost of Rs 20 crore. However the work is yet to be started.

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