Road to progress: Newly-constructed Sweer Bridge turns hours to minutes

Published: November 3, 2014
SHARES
Email
Sweer Bridge in Darosh tehsil connects the village to Chitral. PHOTO: FAZAL KHALIQ/EXPRESS

Sweer Bridge in Darosh tehsil connects the village to Chitral. PHOTO: FAZAL KHALIQ/EXPRESS

CHITRAL: Residents of dozens of villages of Sweer village in Darosh tehsil sighed with relief on Sunday as Sweer Bridge, over Chitral River, was inaugurated and suddenly covering long distances to access Chitral became a thing of the past.

Sweer Bridge now connects Sweer village and its two sub valleys and its 4,320 households directly to Chitral. The main road of Chitral runs parallel to Chitral River which is at five minutes’ distance from the village but without a bridge over the river, residents had to travel of 15 kilometres to Darosh village and from there cross a bridge to reach Chitral.

Residents of Sweer and the surrounding villages complained of being left behind in almost every sector.

“Without the bridge we were deprived of basic education and health,” said a local elder, Muhammad Ali Khan. He added it was really difficult for them to tackle emergency situations in which patients had to be taken to hospitals as it would take time and the patients would die en route. It was especially difficult for pregnant women to travel such long distances.

“The bridge has shortened the journey and now we can get off the bus on the main road and reach our village in just five minutes,” said Qari Jamal Abdul Nasir, another resident. “Patients can also be easily taken across the river.”

The funds for the bridge were given by German Development Bank (KfW) through Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund, and the construction was carried out by Sarhad Rural Support Programme (SRSP). The total cost of the project reached Rs10.7 million in which nearly Rs8.6 million were given by the donors.

At the inaugural ceremony, SRSP CEO Masoodul Mulk told the local community members present that the bridge has been constructed for their convenience and it is their responsibility to take care of it.

Chitral Deputy Commissioner Aminul Haq inaugurated the bridge. “It is not just a simple scheme to help people but in reality it is a lifeline for the people living across the river.”

The construction of the bridge started in November 2013 and was completed in nine months.

Published in The Express Tribune, November 3rd, 2014.

Facebook Conversations

Reader Comments (7)

  • Raghu
    Nov 3, 2014 - 11:36AM

    Good work PTI for making it possible. Other MPAs would have kept these funds in their pockets.

    Recommend

  • Asad Raza
    Nov 3, 2014 - 4:23PM

    @Ragha did you even bother to read the report? Where is the KPK govt involved in a project by an NGO?

    “The funds for the bridge were given by German Development Bank (KfW) through Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund, and the construction was carried out by Sarhad Rural Support Programme (SRSP).”

    Recommend

  • Humza
    Nov 3, 2014 - 4:38PM

    @Raghu: The bridge project and the German funding was there before PTI ever came to power so who are you trying to fool?

    Recommend

  • Taimoor
    Nov 3, 2014 - 6:02PM

    Good work, PTI govt.

    No matter if the project is donor funded, govt paves the way for efficient work.

    Recommend

  • Yoyo
    Nov 4, 2014 - 4:08PM

    PTI had nothing to do with this. For anyone who is familiar with how PPAF operates, here’s how it happened: KfW gave money to PPAF, who in turn gave it probably as a grant to SRSP. SRSP was the implementer and built the bridge. The Govt has
    nothing to do with this. PPAF, through the help of donor funding, is in most places of the country where the Government wouldn’t even dare to go (e.g. Tharparkar).

    Recommend

  • Oats
    Nov 4, 2014 - 7:42PM

    @Taimoor: It seems to me that PTI is desperate for credit when they have done nothing. They are good at speeches and Dharnas but since they haven’t done anything concrete, it’s easy to try to take credit for an NGO project done by the Germans. This is the type of “Naya Pakistan” doublespeak and “honesty” you can expect from PTI when it is surrounded by old characters like Shaikh Rasheed and the Chaudries of Gujrat. Shame.

    Recommend

  • Grace
    Nov 5, 2014 - 9:23PM

    @Raghu: German pay for a project and you say good work PTI? Shows level of education of PTI followers. Read report again. Nothing has improved in KPK under PTI which is why people have rejected Imran Khan and his false promises of revolution. He is just sore loser.

    Recommend

More in K-P