The road widening between Mongar and Gangula, which was supposed to complete by February this year, is only 50 percent complete.

The delayed road construction has not only affected commuters but also farmers living along the roadside.

Tshewang Choden, 30, from Hurungpam in Mongar gewog said that before the road widening began, she and her family earned more than Nu 100,000 annually from selling maize product, oranges, and vegetables.

She alleged that her income dropped drastically after the road widening began. “The dust from the road spread to the fields, destroying the maize and orange saplings, and affecting the vegetable production.”

Tshewang Choden said since her house is located below the road, it is always covered in dust. “We cannot dry clothes and the dust fills our kitchen and utensils.”

A taxi driver, Sonam Choden, 30, said that her new car got damaged while ferrying passengers from Mongar to Gyalpoizhing, Lingmethang, and Lhuentse.

She said that patients and pregnant women have difficulties due to the potholes on the road. “The road is dusty in winter and muddy and slippery in summer, posing risk both to passengers and drivers.”

A frequent visitor from Thridangbi to Mongar town, Tshering Norbu, 40, asked why the dzongkhag officials and Department of Roads officials are not doing much about this.

The DoR’s chief engineer, Karma Rinzin, said the work has been awarded to a new contractor now after the earlier contractor failed to complete the works even on extended time.

Tashi Phuntsho | Mongar