KHUZ (UPPER CHITRAL): People of Khuz and Dewangol at a meeting reiterated their longstanding demand for the construction of a bridge over the Yarkhun river to link their area with other parts of Upper Chitral.
The villages of Khuz lower, Khuz upper and Dewangol, consisting of over 300 houses, are located on the right bank of the river. The main road passes through Kargin and Brep side on the left side of the river, leaving them almost cut off round the year.
There are two pedestrian bridges. The one is hanging pedestrian bridge in front of Khuz that is perhaps the longest in the whole area and usually called by local people as Pule Siraat. The other is located at about four km to the north of Dewangol in front of upper Brep.
People at the public gathering chaired by Muhammad Saeed Khan Lal of Dewangol regretted that even in the 21st century Khuz and Dewangol remains cut-off as there is neither any jeep-able bridge nor a road.
They said past governments promised to construct a jeep-able bridge in front of Khuz or Dewangol but never fulfilled their commitment.There was also a proposal to realign the Mastuj-Broghil road on the Khuz and Dewangol side to avoid its closures from frequent floods and landsliding on Brep side but it could also not be materialized.
Participants of the meeting were carrying placards demanding: “Give us a bridge, save our life”, Construct road to Khuz”, and Khuz and Dewangol people’s demand is “construction of a road”.
The residents said within the last a few years 11 people have lost their life or limbs while crossing the hanging bridge in front of Khuz. A young man from Khuz recently fell from the bridge and sustained severe head injuries and was shifted to Peshawar and then to Karachi.
Talking to ChitralToday on phone,Muhammad Saeed Khan Lal said an access road to the area was the basic right of the people but unfortunately the locals still remain deprived of it. He said the villagers had been appealing to the government to construct a jeep-able bridge in front of Khuz or Dewangol to resolve issues being faced by them on a daily basis throughout the year.
“Our children going to schools in Brep and other areas are risking their life by crossing the dangerous bridges. They also have to travel for over 10 km to and from their schools daily,” he added.
He appealed to the elected representatives, especially the chief minister’s special assistant Wazirzada, to take up the public issue with the provincial government and allocated funds for it without any delay to resolve the public issues and avoid any major incident.
He said if the government did not take steps to resolve the longstanding public issue, the residents of the three villages would be left with no other option but to launch a protest move, including staging a sit-in.