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Yangmalashing residents call for bridge over Kerongri stream – Pema Gatshel

It’s been over five years that the remote village of Yangmalashing in Pema Gatshel was connected to a farm road. However, without a bridge over the Kerongri stream, the farm road has not been able to serve its purpose. According to Yangmalashing residents, the stream swells in summer even when there is a slight rain, making it difficult for them to cross.

According to the residents, debris from the swelling stream blocks the hume pipes during the monsoon.

Despite the gewog administration installing hume pipes to divert water, they have proven ineffective as it gets blocked during summer.

They said if there is a proper bridge over the stream, the village would be connected to Nganglam Dungkhag and the gewog centre.

“It is looking unlikely that we will get the bridge even in the 13th Five-Year Plan. In the absence of a bridge, there is a risk of people and vehicles being washed away when attempting to cross the stream,” said Tshewang Jurme, a resident.

“The frequent heavy rainfall in summer continually disrupts our lives, forcing us to contribute labour to maintain the road regularly,” said Wangmo, another resident.

“During summer, the hume pipe gets blocked leading to road washouts and the need for constant maintenance. We have to work five to six times a year during the summer season,” said Rinchen Zangpo, a resident.

“The village faces difficulties due to fewer households, mostly comprising elderly people and the frequent destruction of the hume pipe, which requires a collective effort for repairs. The hume pipe gets destroyed two to three times a month,” said Kinzang Chedup, Bidungri-Yangmalashing Tshogpa.

Dechenling Gup said the issue was raised in several gewog tshogdes. However, the plans to construct a bridge could not materialise due to budget constraints.

“Even though the bridge construction is not assured at all, we will try to secure funding from other sources to construct the bridge that would benefit the people,” said Jimba Phuntsho, Dechhenling Gup.

The Kerong-Yangmalashing farm road was constructed in 2017. The road spanning almost 14 kilometres, benefits nearly 50 households in the chiwog.

Thinley Dorji, Pema Gatshel

Edited by Sonam Pem