Travel on under-construction road to UoG an uphill task

Published October 1, 2023
GUJRAT: Work on Jalalpur Jattan Road was suspended following the dissolution of the Punjab Assembly in January. — Dawn
GUJRAT: Work on Jalalpur Jattan Road was suspended following the dissolution of the Punjab Assembly in January. — Dawn

GUJRAT: Travel on the 5km long portion of the under-construction Gujrat-Jalalpur Jattan road has been a daunting task for the students and teachers of the University of Gujrat (UoG) and other educational institutes as well as the residents of both the cites for the last almost nine months.

The dualisation of the road portion was launched by former chief minister Parvez Elahi-led coalition government of PTI-PML Q on the demand of the UoG administration and the local business fraternity.

The contractor had launched the project by land filling while the base work with stones was also done but the work had to be stopped after the caretaker Punjab government suspended all the uplift funds in the province, following the dissolution of Punjab Assembly in January.

Now it is quite difficult for the motorists to commute on the road as the work remains suspended.

Repeated requests by the locals and the administration of UoG and Nawaz Sharif Medical College (NSMC) situated along the road have fallen on deaf ears. The same road leads towards the Shahbazpur Bridge over the Chenab river to approach the Sialkot International Airport.

Earlier, a 5km long portion starting from Jalalpur Jattan side was already dualised and carpeted a couple of years ago and the remaining portion of the road between both these towns is yet to be completed.

The issue of the incomplete road infrastructure near the UoG has recently been raised with Governor Balighur Rehman who was at the university’s Hafiz Hayat Campus and also attended the NSMC’s convocation a couple of weeks ago.

The sources said the governor had assured the university to take up the matter with the authorities to get the funds released and road project completed.

A local official of the engineering branch in the highways department said the work was yet to be relaunched as the project had passed through a very tough screening by the different agencies of the government. He hoped to get a nod from the authorities concerned for restart of the work and carpeting of the road by the contractor.

On the other hand, the department officials are conducting tests of the road these days to assess the quality of the material.

Published in Dawn, October 1st, 2023

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