A bridge too far for this tribal village in Malkangiri

Water-locked Atalguda village in Mathili block remains cut off from the mainland during rainy season

Published: 23rd August 2019 06:08 AM  |   Last Updated: 23rd August 2019 06:08 AM   |  A+A-

Villagers crossing Dharmadhara river in absence of a bridge | Express

By Express News Service

MALKANGIRI: Even after 72 years of Independence, a tribal village in Mathili block continues to remain water-locked due to failure of the State Government to construct a bridge over Dharmadhara river.
Situated around seven km from Mathili, Atalguda village in Dhungiaput panchayat with a population of 300 is surrounded by water and cut off from the mainland. But the Government has turned a blind eye to the miseries of the tribal villagers.

Deprived of road communication, the villagers are forced to cross the river every day to reach Govindpalli and Mathili for their daily needs. Though the Government has provided a motorised boat for the villagers, it has been rendered useless as some of its parts have malfunctioned.

Sources said in the past, many people have lost their lives while crossing the river. Though the absence of a bridge is causing inconvenience to everyone, the worst hit are students and patients. Locals said crossing the river in waist-deep water is a routine affair for students to reach Govindpalli to attend school and college. Atalguda has only a primary school.

When the water level increases in the river, students prefer not to attend school by risking their lives. Their studies are affected the most during rainy season, said the villagers.

Similarly, patients too face a harrowing time in the absence of a bridge. In order to reach the hospital, one has to cross the river to be able to take the main road. There have been several instances of patients losing their lives while crossing the river.

Locals said several requests to the Government to construct a bridge over the river have yielded no result. “It is extremely unfortunate that the Government is insensitive towards our plight,” they rued.

Contacted, Mathili BDO Asish Kumar Bhoi said the Rural Development department has given a proposal to the State Government for construction of a bridge over Dharmadhara river.

Stay up to date on all the latest Odisha news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp