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After administration failed to repair the road between the village of Gokolgre and Achotchonggre, residents and NGOs under Bajengdoba area in North Garo Hills, decided to repair the road on their own.
More than 2300 villagers from 34 villages got down to doing what should have been the prerogative of those in the administration – easing their suffering by repairing the dysfunctional road.
The NGOs include Garo Students’ Union (GSU), Achik Holistic Awakening Movement (AHAM), A•chik Youth Welfare Organisation (AYWO), Joint Action Committee (JAC) of Bajengdoba and the area development committee of Achotchongre, along with residents on Friday, got their hands dirty and repaired the entire stretch that had become untraversable even for the four-wheeler.
According to the sources, the road in question was sanctioned more than five years ago with a contractor from Williamnagar, Romilla Sangma being awarded the contract.
However, the contractor, after completion of about a km of the road under PMGSY allegedly abandoned work. Ever since the road has been neglected and left without any further development.
The neglect of the road has led to many sections turning a nightmare, villagers said.
“We have approached various departments, including the district administration, PWD and the C & RD Block for possible ways to make the road better but received no word on when it will be done, so we decided to do the work by ourselves,” said the development committee president, Tengsrang D Sangma.
The villagers began their work early morning and even repaired a wooden bridge on the same road. The bridge has been in a state of despair.
“We are extremely happy that everyone has come together to do their bit in repairing the road with the help of the Pik – Up association by providing their vehicles to pick up and drop people. We are extremely thankful to all that helped in ensuring we were able to complete the road,” said GSU President, Samar Marak.
The villagers repaired a total of over 7-km of the road in a single day, just a little less than the PMGSY total of 7.5 km.
The initiative to repair the road comes even as other places struggle with roads that have been left to run its course in many parts of Garo Hills.