By Our Correspondent Kalikot, July 4: None travelling along the Karnali Highway state that their journey was delightful as the road is in a dilapidated condition.
The lack of upgrading the highway has affected transport operators alongside the passengers. During summer and winter, the highway is covered with dust and it turns muddy as soon as it starts to rain.
Along with the problem of muddy road, commuting along the highway is also obstructed often by floods and landslides during the monsoon.
From Bangeshimal, Surkhet to Jumla, the highway is 232-kilometre long. Of the 232-kilometre highway, it is 147 kilometres up to Kalikot headquarters Manma and 85 kilometres until Jumla.
On the highway, major risky sections include Siyala, Paduka, Sangebazar and Rakam areas of Dailekh district. Similarly, locals and commuters also suffer in Gagankhola, Serighat, Megrakhola, Sunarkhola, Pipali Takulla Khola areas of Kalikot as well. More than two dozen sections of the highway often get obstructed during the monsoon.
Moreover, Karnali hasn’t received heavy rains yet. However, even normal rain leads to obstruction in the highway.
District Traffic Police Office, Kalikot, informed that they have kept an excavator stand-by to help vehicles cross the section along Sunarkhola. The excavator is said to be kept in the area until monsoon comes to an end.
When an obstruction occurs along the highway, the authorities also struggle to bring an excavator to the site on time due to the poor road condition in other areas as well. If the road in Sunarkhola gets obstructed by landslide, it takes around a week to clear the rubble.
Authorities also had a plan to upgrade the road from Serighat to district hospital. Asphalt was used over the muddy road due to which it has been washed away in monsoon.
The road is now similar to a river, said locals.