Mancherial: Dwellers of Bokkalagutta hamlet under Thimmapur Gram Panchayat in Mandamarri mandal have been undergoing hardships due to lack of a bridge across a rivulet, Palavagu, on the outskirts of their habitation since many decades. Ironically, Palavagu is situated barely 10 km away from the newly formed Mancherial district headquarters.
Bokkalagutta was formed on the shores of the rivulet some 150 years ago. It has 750 voters and has a population of around 2,000 people according to 2011 census. It houses the ancient Gandhari Fort is situated on the peripherals. Residents of this hamlet witness problems in crossing the rivulet during monsoon. They erect a temporary bridge across following a rainy season of a year.
Baligonda Kishan, a native of the hamlet told Telangana Today that they had to travel around additional 10 km in order to reach neighbouring villages and Mancherial due to lack of the bridge across Palavagu. “We have been requesting elected representatives and officials to address the challenge since several decades,” he said.
“Many public representatives promised to grant funds for erecting the bridge across the rivulet at the time of hustings. But, they weren’t fulfilled after they come to power. The then Pedapalli MP G Venkata Swamy granted Rs 17 lakh for constructing a low-level bridge. The funds were utilised for laying road-dam at some other place,” he recalled.
Not only dwellers but also the pilgrims are facing problems following lack of this facility. “The tourists are forced to shell out huge amounts on hiring auto-rickshaws in order to reach Gandhari Fort. One can easily visit the historical site if there is a bridge across the rivulet. It is the need of the hour,” said Hyderabad-based historian D Satyanarayana.
When asked, Mandamarri MPDO V Praveen Kumar stated that a proposal was submitted for the constructing bridge and internal roads of the hamlet in 2014 under Grama Jyothi programme aimed at improving rural parts. “We are unable to solve the problem due to lack of funds,” he said, adding, they were aware of the plight of the residents.
Pic caption: Seeking attention: A motorist crossing the Palavagu rivulet through a temporary bridge near Bokkalagutta, a hamlet of Thimmapur village in Mandamarri on Wednesday.