Gulma-Lohagarda border (Jharkhand), Aug.1 (ANI): Naxals in Gulma-Lohargarda border have become a major hindrance in construction of a bridge in Koel River.
Local residents are in dire need of the bridge but the Naxals have been preventing its construction for a long time. It has led to aggravation of problems in the daily life of local people who are forced to cross the river with improvised boats made of wooden logs.
During monsoon, the water level rises up to 30 feet increasing danger to life.
Though the tender for the bridge construction has been passed several times in the past by Government, no contractor wants to undertake the work here due to fear of Naxalites.
About 50 villages are disconnected from each other, affecting the day-to-day life.
Naxals have always targeted development tasks in remote rural areas, as it would end their reign in such areas. They are hardly concerned with the development of the area or the welfare of the villagers.
"It is a main river here but the local people have to face a lot of hardship to cross it. There have been several occasions when there were talks of bridge construction, every time the Naxals just dismantle it. This is the reason why there is no development, as the village is faced with a lot of problems," said Ashok Shukla, a local resident in Gumla.
"It's been three to four years since the plans to construct a bridge over Koel River are going on. But finding no actual initiative resulting into bridge construction has dejected all villagers here," Baghmbar Ohdar, another local resident in Gumla.
"We have read various newspaper reports stating administrative officials' efforts for construction of the bridge over Koel River. But we are just living on assurances till date. The residents living on the north side of village have to cross over the river jeopardising their lives," Ohdar added.
Villagers lament the fact that because of lack of a bridge, no development initiative has succeeded here.
"It is not just the families but the efforts for spreading education have suffered badly due to absence of any proper bridge over the river. There are times when there boats cannot float especially during heavy rains," Ajay Kumar, a local resident.
Villagers are surprised to notice that the Naxals despite their claims to be the voice of voiceless are actually preventing development works meant for the villagers here. The Naxals are proving nothing but themselves the actual enemies of poor villagers.
Local residents are awaiting the day when development would actually take place here. But they are also aware the Naxalites, who view such developmental works as a challenge to their existence, would not let it happen. (ANI)