News Karnataka
Thursday, April 25 2024

River bridge washout puts villagers in hardship since 3 years

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Karawara: For the past three years, the villagers of Heggaru, Kalleshwar, and Halavalli villages in the Ankola taluk of Uttara Kannada district have been living in the shadows of uncertainty due to the absence of a vital bridge that was washed away by the force of flood. Despite visits from both the Chief Minister and the former Chief Minister, the villagers find themselves still awaiting the promised reconstruction, causing them to tread cautiously on a makeshift bridge while their lives hang in the balance.

The bridge, which once spanned the Gangavali river, connecting Gullapura in Yallapur taluk to Heggaru village, met its untimely demise during the destructive incident of 2020. A visit from then-Chief Minister Basavaraja Bommai and the subsequent inspection by the current Chief Minister, Siddaramaiah, offered hope as they pledged to expedite the bridge’s reconstruction. However, the passage of three years has revealed a stark contrast between promise and action.

Presently, villagers resort to traversing a flimsy temporary bridge, which is fraught with peril. During heavy rainfall, the makeshift structure succumbs to the rising waters, posing significant risks to both pedestrians and vehicles attempting to cross. The plight is particularly dire for students attempting to reach schools and colleges, and even basic access to medical facilities becomes a harrowing ordeal.

“Ration distribution through cooperative societies can be managed locally, but transportation via boat is no longer feasible. Access to hospitals is severely hampered, and our students’ education is suffering. Our pleas to MLAs and Ministers have fallen on deaf ears. Urgent action is imperative,” implored Jayaprakash Gaukar of Heggar village.

The washed away bridge falls in the constituency of Yallapur , even the MLA Shivram Hebbara, also hails from the same village. The previous BJP administration had pledged to reconstruct the bridge, but this commitment has remained unfulfilled till date. The bridge, a lifeline linking over ten villages on the opposite bank of the Gangavali river, has become a critical concern, leaving the villagers and students in a state of perpetual hardship as they struggle to commute each day.

The rainy season compounds the villagers’ woes, rendering hospital visits treacherous and compelling them to undertake perilous journeys alongside the river. In this dire scenario, the affected villages are fervently advocating for the construction of a new bridge within a year, in order to reclaim a semblance of normalcy and ensure the safety and well-being of villagers..

As the villagers’ patience wears thin, their demand for swift governmental intervention gains momentum. The pressing need for a steadfast and secure bridge hangs in the balance, symbolizing not only a physical connection but a lifeline for these resilient villagers battling against the odds.

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