SIALKOT: The construction work on a 20-kilometer main Daska-Sambrial Road has been lying suspended for the last one year, as the main road, which also leads to Sialkot International Airport, has been lying under construction for the last five years here. Daska-Sambrial Road facilitates hundreds of villages along Daska and Sambrial tehsils.
Bus operators said it was difficult for them to run their buses on this pothole-infested road. The road is bone breaker for both travelers and buses because of its dilapidated condition. They said at places there were a foot deep ditches.
The government stopped its construction more than a year ago after reports of misuse of funds in the project. The heaps of crushed stone and soil along either side of the road are the also stumbles in the flow of traffic. Commuters and bus operators have demanded that the Punjab government ensure the early resumption of the construction work. Growers in both Daska and Sambrial tehsils are also suffering from great difficulties in transporting their yields to local markets because of the bad condition of the road. Local people Muhammad Rasheed, Khalid Mehmood, Nasir Mehmood, Ghulam Hussain, Abdul Majeed, Ansar Mehmood Butt, Ishrat Hussain and Shehbaz Ali said that it was amazing to add that during the VIP movement, heads of district and divisional administrations often used this road to arrive at the Sialkot International Airport, but they never took notice of the very miserable condition of this road. The people coming from abroad also felt shock to see the ditch-filled road. They also expressed grave concern over the alleged slackness of officials of the highways department and the Sialkot district administration.
When contacted, the officials of highways department refused to comment. District administration officials said that a “go ahead” was awaited by the Punjab government to resume work on the road.
Local social, business and political circles have expressed grave concern over the situation of the road. They urged Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar, Commissioner of Gujranwala Division Waqas Ali Mehmood and Sialkot Deputy Commissioner Dr Syed Bilal Haider to look into the matter.
Published in Dawn, June 2nd, 2019