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Shillong: The Meghalaya High Court has suggested to the state government to approach the Centre for sanction for construction of a road in East Garo Hills district.

A division bench, headed by Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee, hearing a PIL on Thursday said the state could approach the relevant union ministry for an in-principle sanction for the construction of the road, the absence of which is creating a lot of suffering for the local people.

In the event the Union declines to release funds for such purpose, the Union may be impleaded and the reasons for declining the proposal may be ascertained. In the event an in principle approval is obtained, an abstract of costs should be prepared within two weeks and submitted,so that the work in such regard can be commenced at the earliest and without undue delay, it said.

During the hearing, the counsel representing the state had informed the court that the funds for such roads are sanctioned and provided by the Centre through the rural development ministry.

The counsel for the state also said an abstract of the expenses required for the construction of such roads was submitted in 2018 but was returned by the office of the PWD (Roads) chief engineer to its executive engineer on the ground that the scheme could not be processed due to financial constraints.

The PIL was filed by an individual Arnold G Momin, a resident of Jakopgre.

Momin in his petition submitted that there is no proper road between Chiminmingre and Kakwa Duragre and hundreds of villagers in the area face daily difficulties in commuting. It appeared that a road had been recently constructed upon due sanction being obtained covering approximately 3.674 km between Chiminmingre and Kakwa Songgitcham, but a section is incomplete as a bridge is required across a river, but none has been built and the state said no sanction was for the accorded for it.

The petition said a proper road needs to be constructed between Jakopgre and Kakwa Duragre via Rongrekgre, a distance of about 7.70 km.

According to the petitioner, residents of villages in and around Kakwa Duragre who require to regularly travel to Jakopgre or to Cheminmingre have only a kutcha road and at least one section where a river has to be crossed.

During the rainy season it is dangerous to try and cross the river and the condition of the existing kutcha road deteriorated .

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