Virbhadra promises roads on Himachal Day, but the runway to his constituency is pathetic


I just wish that Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister, Virbhadra Singh dumped the helicopter and used the roads more often. While addressing a gathering in Rohru on Himachal Day, yesterday, he said that about Rs 2500 crore were being procured from World Bank for making the roads of the state wide and that the Theog-Hatkoti road was being improved to facilitate the fruit growers.

There cannot be a worse eyewash than the latter statement while referring to improve the Theog-Hatkoti road. While the road widening work has been long over there are no signs of metalling the widened road. Meanwhile, the road that already exists is in bad shape and one has to steer more than what the curves demand just to take the car or vehicle through a better surface. The entire Theog to Hatkoti road is full of pitfalls and even the patch work done, may be a year ago, is falling apart at all places. A journey – Shimla to Hatkoti that can be done in three hours takes five hours just because the roads are pathetic.

Why should I believe Mr Singh’s claims that “about Rs 2,000 crore were spent on such activities since last year”? Well which activities? I don’t see a trace of those activities.

Also, if the condition of the road leading to Mr Singh’s constituency – Rohru is in such a pathetic condition, how do I believe that the road in other parts of the state are in better condition? Or is Mr Singh sure that his association with Rohru is over as Rohru has been declared as a reserved constituency; and he’s eyeing to contest from Shimla next year. If that’s what he’s thinking, he should know that the majority of the voters in Shimla consist of people from Upper Shimla.

I remember, earlier, when the CM used to visit Rohru or other parts of Upper Shimla (the days when he travelled by car), days ahead of his visit, the roads and the parapets used to be repaired and all milestones and reflectors painted properly. Why should the PWD care now, as they are sure that the CM is going to use the air and not zip through the roads? The roads are for the common man and they don’t deserve good roads.

I wish, I had the luxury of staying in Himachal and file an RTI application to know how many air travels the CM has made in the past four years of his tenure, and how much money has been blown on his helicopter travels? If anybody files an RTI and gets a reply, please share it with HimVani (info [AT] HimVani [dot] com).

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  1. Judicious use of public money for any cause including roads is secondary to anyone in our political leadership. It is the vested interests of certain sections of the society that makes a routine growth in basic infrastructure. Politics is the game of survival, so planning is left far behing the populism. No one dares to raise a voice against all odds in a fully government dependent system exept opposition party leaders. It gives an explanation to the anti incumbancy factor that works everywhere.

  2. Same is the situation of road network in Kangra District. Recently I had gone home and I was surprised to see the condition of roads. Main access to places like Dharamshala, Palampur , Hamiprur, Jawalaji, Chamunda are all full of pot holes. I must also add that last time I saw a major roadways project in Himachal was when BJP was in power.

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