Reconstructed Chakdara bridge opened

Dir Lower, May 8: Senator Zahid Khan of the ANP on Tuesday inaugurated Chakdara Bridge, a section of which was washed away during 2010 destructive floods. The bridge which played a key role in connecting Dir Lower, Dir Upper, Chitral, Bajaur Agency and some parts of Swat district with other parts of the country had lost one of its sections during July 2010 floods and created hardships for millions of dwellers of these areas. Keeping in view the public hardships, Pak Army Engineering core have lay down a one-way temporary steel bridge on river Swat, but heavy transport was not allowed on the bridge. While the light vehicles coming from district Dir side had to use century-old British regime steel-made bridge. The destruction of this main bridge in floods had affected the infrastructure and life routine of the people of Dir and other upper parts as people some time had to wait for hours to cross the one-way bridge due to heavy rush of vehicular traffic. The National Highway Authority with the financial assistance of Asian Development Bank had also proposed to construct a new bridge at the site with an estimated cost or Rs 560 millions. Work on this new bridge was also underway but due to its time consumption the authorities had also started work to reconstruct the missing section of the old bridge to curtail the suffering of people in less time. The project to construct the missing part of the old bridge was not included in the main project of Rs 540 million and funds for this project was provided from the personal fund of Senator Zahid Khan and since last two months workers were busy in day-night shifts to construct the bright in short possible time. Senator Zahid Tuesday inaugurated the bridge for light vehicular traffic by unveiling the plaque at the site. While, the heavy traffic would be allowed from May 16 to cross the bridge. A large number of area people, officials of NHA and police were present on this occasion.—APP]]>

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