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Plight of a remote village

By Our Reporter

 SHILLONG: The plight of the people in rural areas of the State has long been an issue of concern and alleged indifference of the authorities has only made the situation grimmer.

While the residents of the city are comparatively better off when it comes to access to basic facilities like proper roads and health care, those in far-flung areas are deprived of several fundamental needs.

A journey to the remote village of Pdengshakap near Amlarem in West Jaintia Hills confirms the sorry state of affairs in many villages in Jaintia Hills area of the State.

The village with a small population and located near the Myntdu-Leshka Hydro Electric project (MLHEP) sans proper road connectivity till date. What is surprising is that the crucial village road leads to MLHEP and the Indo-Bangla border area of Muktapur.

Though the road till Amlarem is in a decent condition, the real misery starts after that. Potholes become primary on the road that leads to the village.

It is learnt that the money for the construction of the road was sanctioned a few years back but to no avail.

When contacted, Amlarem MLA Stephanson Mukhim said that the company which was allotted the construction work of the road ‘was not serious while

executing the project.’

According to the MLA a fresh tender was invited and the work has been reallotted to a company.

The officials of the project also admitted that road connectivity is a major problem in the area.

“We have made efforts to repair certain stretches of the road with our own financial backing,” an official said.

Meanwhile, the poor economic condition of the people of the village improved slightly after work for the MLHEP started in the area. Many of the villagers were employed in the project.

Talking about the initiatives to improve the living conditions in the village, the SDO (Civil) in charge of Subdivision 5, Joe Kharjana said that a public health centre (PHC) was proposed in the area.

“We had even advertised for the post of doctors but no one is willing to come to this remote village,” Kharjana said.

The SDO also informed that orange and tree plantation is being carried out in 450 hectares and 1400 hectares of land respectively to give a boost to the economic condition of the people.

“We are giving them samples besides maintenance cost to improve their economic condition,” he added.

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