Two bridges side by side, but of no use

Two newly constructed bridges over a canal in Lalmonirhat’s Kaliganj upazila have remained unfit for movements due to lack of approach roads on either side of both the structures.

As there are no approach roads, connecting both the bridges, people of several villages under Tushbhandar union are being deprived of getting any benefits from the unplanned bridges, villagers alleged.

Local residents said over a thousand people from Bairati, Chilakhal, Chikarbazar and Matabpur villages have to cross the Bairati Canal to go to their destinations, including the local union parishad (UP) office and Kaliganj upazila headquarters.

Earlier, they used to build a bamboo-made makeshift bridge over the canal on self-help basis to ease their communication problem, especially during the rainy season, villagers said.

Bangladesh Agricultural Development Corporation (BADC) and Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief constructed the two separate bridges, close to each other, in 2022 and 2023 respectively.

But the two newly-constructed bridges brought nothing for the people living in the nearby areas, locals said.

Farmer Abu Bakar said thought construction of a concrete bridge was a long-cherished demand for the villagers, they are yet to get any benefits of the two unplanned bridges.

Recently villagers put a bamboo-made platform on one side of one of the bridges so that people can get into the bridge and cross it, he said.

This is nothing, but waste of government money, Bakar added.

Abbas Ali, a resident of Bairati village, said despite getting two new bridges over the Bairati Canal, they are still suffering like before as neither of those of any use.

Besides, lengths of the two newly constructed bridges are too short, compared to the measurement of the canal, he said, adding that the water flow through the canal is being obstructed due to unplanned construction of the bridges.

Both the bridges may collapse if a major flood occur in the surrounding areas, Abbas said.

According to Lalmonirhat BADC, construction of the 98-feet-long and 15-feet-wide bridge, spending Tk 79.47 lakh, was completed in June 2022.

While, Disaster Management and Relief Ministry built the 50-feet-long and 14-feet-wide bridge at a cost of Tk 70 lakh in May this year.

Tushbhandar UP Chairman Nur Islam said the engineers can say whether the bridges are unplanned, but the truth is those are of no use.

It is quite difficult to make the two bridges usable without constructing the protection walls and connecting roads, the UP chairman added.

Kaliganj Upazila Project Implementation Officer (PIO) Mohammad Ferdous, however, said the bridges have been built according to the plan.

The connecting roads of the bridges have been washed away due to the recent flood, the PIO said. 

Lalmonirhat BADC Executive Engineer Altaf Hossain said the approach roads, which damaged during the flood, will be repaired soon.

Back To Top