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Slow pace of Smart City works pester Srinagarites

Dilapidated roads, potholes hit vehicular, pedestrian movement
07:19 AM Jul 05, 2024 IST | GK NEWS SERVICE
slow pace of smart city works pester srinagarites

Srinagar, July 4: Sluggish pace of Smart City works is taking a heavy toll on commuters in the summer capital even as authorities have failed to undertake repairs of dilapidated roads hitting vehicular and pedestrian movement.


Traffic congestion has become a daily ordeal for commuters traveling across the city, especially Downtown areas. As a result, patience and resilience have become essential for those navigating this heavily congested stretch.


The once bustling stretch of roads in Downtown have turned into nightmare due to slow-moving vehicles due to dug-up roads. With roads cut and in disrepair, the journey that once took mere minutes now extends into hours, affecting the daily lives of thousands.


"Every day is a struggle rather than a nightmare due to inordinate delay in completion of Smart City works. The roads are in such bad shape that it feels like we are driving on an obstacle course. I leave home one hour earlier just to reach work on time," said Shafiq Ahmad, a government employee.


A school teacher, Urafab who travels from Pantha Chowk to Narbal on a daily basis said that the traffic jams are taking a toll on his health, besides time. “By the time I reach school, I am already exhausted. The authorities need to expedite the construction and repair the roads immediately," he said. said.


"My college is just a few kilometres away, but it takes me over an hour to get there. The traffic jams are unbearable, and the condition of the roads makes it even worse," said Zahida, a college student adding that he is late to college most days because of traffic jams.


Muhammad Yousuf, a cab driver said that his job depends on timely deliveries, but the traffic and road conditions are making it impossible. “The delays are costing me money and customers," he said adding that with each passing day Firdous Jan, Healthcare Worker:


"I work in a hospital and every minute counts. The traffic jams are not just inconvenient; they can be life-threatening for those needing urgent medical care. We need better roads and faster construction work."

These voices highlight the urgent need for authorities to address the traffic and road conditions promptly. The daily hardships faced by commuters from Pantha Chowk to Narbal are taking a significant toll, affecting their time, health, and livelihoods.

"Customers are avoiding this route altogether. It’s affecting our livelihood. I hope the authorities take note of our plight and act swiftly," said Abdul Rashid Khan who runs a small grocery store at Nowgam.

Residents and commuters alleged that the primary cause of the congestion is the ongoing construction of flyovers and dug-up roads. While these projects, they said, promise to ease traffic in the future, the current state of the roads surrounding these construction sites is abysmal. “Potholes, uneven surfaces, and narrow lanes are common, adding to the woes of people,” they alleged.

"The roads are a mess. The authorities have dug up various sections for flyover construction but haven't bothered to repair the surrounding roads. It’s as if they’ve forgotten about the people who use these roads daily," said Ghulam Nabi Dar, a cab driver.

When contacted, a senior official from the Smart City Project Ltd acknowledged the issue. "We understand the inconvenience caused by the ongoing constructions on roads. However, these projects are crucial for the long-term infrastructure development of Srinagar,” they said adding that their endeavour is to complete the construction as soon as possible.

Traffic police department officials said that they leave no stone unturned to decongest the city. “We are working on every solution to ease the traffic jams. Men and machinery remains in circulation round the clock to ensure smooth flow of traffic on roads,” they added.