Vijaya Raj, Guruvayanakere
Bantwal, Nov 26, 2018: Bantwal-Villapuram national highway 73 (old 234) passes through Belthangadi taluk. Road users struggle to pass through the stretch from Bantwal to Belthangady, as the sheer topography of the road is lined with a number of curves, and a very narrow roads at a distance of about 30 km. This road becomes more dangerous from Guruvayanakere, where roads from Moodabidri, Karkala and Puttur join the highway. From here till Ujire, all vehicles move dead slow even as mishaps have become an order of the day.
Besides connecting taluk headquarters, NH 73 is also the main link to popular pilgrimage centre Dharmasthala. Pilgrims from the northern hinterlands of the State as well as those from coastal region use this highway to reach Dharmasthala, as a result of which the road is always abuzz with moving tourist vehicles.
As there are many educational institutions situated in Ujire, a number of students and other commuters take this route and are bound to face dangers.Most of the cultivators travel via this route to communicate to the taluk headquarters and the dilapidated condition of the road has become a nightmare to many.
Failed Drainage system beside the Highway
Following lack of stormwater drains, the rainwater flows on the road at Guruvayanakere and many places in Belthangadi causing inconvenience to the pedestrians and motorists. Though the drains exist for namesake, the water flows onto the road causing trouble to the motorists.The drainage at various places in Belthangadi and particularly at Guruvayankere is in an unfinished state due to which rainwater has no place to drain but flow onto the roads. Thus, these rains revealed the failure of the drainage system all throughout Belthangadi, and specifically at Guruvayanakere.
Moreover, at many places in the Belthangaditaluk where the national highway passes through, one can find large pondsacross the roads. This problem is a normal occurrence particularly at places including Guruvayanakere, Santekatte, Ujjire, Belthangady and other places.
Roads are getting worst
Since Shiradi Ghat has been closed for repair work some time back, most of the traffic passed through Charmadi Ghat. Due to this increase in the vehicle density and the flowing of water onto the roads has increased the chances of the road getting destroyed. When potholes turn up due to this persistent condition, the motorists are forced to face unnecessary risk and danger.
Guruvayanakere-Belthangadystretch has developed several cracks which were often temporarily repaired by the authorities concerned, but it turned out to be nothing but an eyewash. This road has now developed more cracks and has made way for major mishaps.
Risk to motorists
At Guruvayanakere, no two heavy vehicles can pass in opposite direction due to the very narrow road. The road never saw widening for past half a century, except the drainage and pedestrian pathway has been completely used to bit widen the road. Moreover, the edges of the road have worn out at many places forming dangerous situations. Importantly, the worn-out edges of the elevated roads can easily cause a two-wheeler to lose traction, fall and inflict injury on to the rider.
Since the traffic density has increased, the two-wheeler riders are prone to riding on the edges of the road only increasing the chances of an accident along the stretch. Even if the rider tries to give a miss to the pot holes and worn out edges of the road, his attempts will only increase the chances of meeting with an accident with another vehicle.Even during normal days, the curving road was dangerous when two heavy vehicles came face to face. At least one vehicle had to leave the road partially to make way for the other.
Road users appear destined to suffer this ordeal for quite long, as the National Highway Authority still in the process of securing resources and acquisition of required land for widening the road. Unless Political big weights show real interest and support, the widening of this road is far from reality.
The commuters therefore urge the Member of Parliament and concerned National Highway Authority to look into this issue seriously and take necessary action immediately.