Ferozpur (Punjab), Apr 28 : People living in two dozen border villages in Ferozpur have been agitating for a bridge across the Sutluj River.
Their farms are located on either side of the river and connectivity has been a perpetual problem for reaching to their farmlands. The present arrangement of crossing the river in boats is not a solution to their problem.
"We have our farms across the river and there is no bridge. We face a lot of problems while crossing the river. When we travel in boats, the seeds and other materials that we carry fall into the river due to which a sizable quantity of seeds is lost," said Buda Singh, Panchayat Member, Teja Rahela village.
Transporting their produce across the river is equally problematic and at times the difficult weather conditions complicate it further.
The demand for constructing a bridge across the river by the villagers has been pending for long and they blame official apathy. Border Security Force (BSF) personnel, who also use boats to travel from Maujam post to Teja Rahela post across the river, have supported the villagers' demand.
"Around 20-25 villages will benefit along with us if the bridge is constructed. The bridge will solve the problems of the villagers. I hope that the committee set by the district administration will sanction money for the construction of the bridge," said V.K. Sharma, Deputy Inspector General, BSF.
BSF officials feel that the construction of the bridge will also make the patrolling process easier. Meanwhile, the district officials have expressed optimism about meeting the villagers' demand by the year-end.