KANGPOKPI: After the wrath of monsoon hit hard Twilang area along Imphal-Tamenglong Road in the form of landslide that completely cut off the area with rest of the world, it has landed thousands of people residing along Saparmeina-Saikul road in similar condition.
On July 10 at around 1:30 pm, 15-year old RCC Slab Culvert/Bridge along Saparmeina-Saikul state highway was badly damaged by flood caused by heavy monsoon. The Slab Culvert having a span of about 5.00 metre is situated at chainage 11.40 Km. from Saparmeina near Thangal Surung under Saikul Sub Division in Kangpokpi District.
According to Th. Loken Singh, Executive Engineer, Sadar Hills Division, PWD Manipur, the RCC Slab Culvert is totally damaged as the abutment on both sides of the bridge has been damaged by the flood failure on July 10 and the condition of the culvert is beyond repaired.
Considering the threat of utilizing the road at such condition, the Executive Engineer had closed the road and traffic movement has been halted as a precautionary measure by putting a signboard of closure of the road at the site.
The Saparmeina-Saikul state highway is the only lifeline of the local populace and the aged RCC Slab Culvert/Bridge serves as a one of the key component of the road leading to Kangpokpi DHQs from various villages in Konghom areas and Saikul Hill Town.
Thousands of people in over hundreds villages in Saikul areas including Saikul Hill Town and Konghom areas had to faced tremendous hardships with the closure of the road as the RCC Slab Culvert is no more viable for functioning owing to the damaged caused by devastated flood.
A team of Konghom Chiefs’ Association and Konghom Area Youth Development Union led by L.Tongkholen Khongsai, President, ST.Morcha Sadar Hills, who is also the chief of L.Loujol village visited the area and damaged RCC Slab Culvert/Bridge while taking stock of the public grievances.
Speaking on the sideline of the tour, L. Tongkhlolen Khongsai, President, ST.Morcha Sadar Hills said that people residing in Konghom area along Saparmeina-Saikul solely depend on the road for transportation, connectivity, emergency services, etc. and closure of the road as precautionary measure owing to the damaged RCC Slab Culvert caused tremendous hardships to the people.
He pointed out that a diversion was made before constructing the RCC Slab Culvert/Bridge which can be easily restore as a temporary alternate connectivity by the concerned department considering the plights of the people and appealed the state Government to look into the matter and initiated immediate action.
Meanwhile, the Executive Engineer, Sadar Hills Division, PWD Manipur in his report to the Chief Engineer, PWD Manipur stated that the road is to be diverted from Ekou to Langkhong via Ekouphai which connects Saparmeina-Ekou road on the southern side of Thangal Surung. However, the said diversion road is a kutcha road connected by a minor old wooden bridge of about 10 metre spans which required immediate repairing to bear traffic volume.
However, the ST.Morcha Sadar Hills President, L. Tongkholen Khongsai recommended that the earlier diversion over the same stream near the damaged RCC Slab Culvert to be restore and constructed at the earlier which will be more convenience and easier to accomplished.
Despite of the closure, two wheelers were seen plying over the damaged RCC Slab Culvert/Bridge on emergency.
Many farmers, office goers, etc. have been reeling under severe plights owing to the damaged of the RCC Slab Culvert/Bridge and seek Government attention in arranging at least an alternative connectivity at the earliest.