Dispute over route stalls postal road construction in Kailali

Dhangadi, January 6

Construction of the Kailali stretch of the postal road has suffered due to dispute between stakeholders.

The road construction in Parewa-6, Baijapur area was disrupted after the Postal Road Project Committee, the concerned contractor company and district forest office couldn’t agree whether or not to construct the road according to the old survey.

While the project committee and the contractor are for developing the road as per the survey, the forest office has obstructed the construction citing the destruction of a huge swathe of forest if the road is built as per the survey.

Even the locals are for developing the road according to the survey, saying the alternative will cause displacement of many locals.

Satish Kumar, residential engineer of the Government of India, rued the dispute and the delay caused. “We were to build the road as per the previous survey as otherwise it would require a lot of effort and extra money,” he said.

Postal Road Project Chief Turunt Mandal also protested the idea of constructing the road through a different route. “In fact, the DFO’s reason behind the obstruction is just a lame excuse as even more forest cover will be destroyed if we change the present route,” he argued, adding, “The road will be 7-km longer if it is built through the new proposed route.”

On his part, Kailali District Forest Officer Hemlal Aryal defended his decision, saying he has written to the higher-ups for a final decision on the issue.

Kailali Chief District Officer Mohan Chapagain said an appropriate solution to the dispute will be found at the earliest.

Of the total 61-km that the Indian contractor is supposed to construct and black-top eastward from Dhangadi’s Campus Road, 22 km is yet to be completed and black-topped.