Bhagalpur Residents forced into Island Life [%new%]
News Credit-Shraddha Chaudhary, III Year, B.A., LL.B. (Hons.)
On the Mokama-Sahebganj (Jharkhand) NH-80, Bhaina bridge, 35 km from Bhagalpur and five km from Kahalgaon on the east that has a super NTPC plant, got damaged after heavy rain on July 2. Similarly, the Baijani bridge on Bhagalpur-Hansdiha (Jharkhand), around 15 km away from Bhagalpur linking it with Dumka, Godda, Deoghar, Dhanbad, Bokaro and Ranchi, got damaged on July 27. The only other connector to the city of Bhagalpur, Bihar, the Champanala bridge on NH-80, on the north western outskirts of the urban centre, is so rickety that it only allows light vehicles to go across.
As a result, the city has turned into an island, almost entirely cut off from the rest of the state. Residents have no access to a lot of amenities, people working outside are having trouble commuting, rains have caused a hike in prices of vegetables and fruits and the increasing water level has become a cause of worry for everyone.
The bridges have been in such a bad shape for several years now, and it is clearly the result of the negligence of the government that the bridges have not been fixed to this day. With the state government in a shaky position and elections waiting to happen, political parties are using these events to sully the state government. However, gaining ground for anybody in the state is a big problem at present, considering that incessant rains are a he dampener.
It is difficult to speculate how long the city will remain cut off, since it would mostly depend on the unpredictable rain, but it is hoped that as soon as there is some respite, the state government will open its eyes to the situation and begin building and rebuilding (as the case may be) these bridges with are absolutely crucial to everyday life. In the meantime, if the situation gets worse, basic supplies, including healthcare goods might have to be flown in by helicopter.