Chimi Dema | Barshong
The 54-kilometre farm road that connects five chiwogs in Barshong, Tsirang has made access to market easy besides cutting the distance to the nearest road head.
However, in monsoon, without stabilised base course, it is difficult for the vehicles to negotiate the road.
Only 3.5km of the gewog’s 11 farm roads has been stabilised.
A taxi drops Kencho Wangmo from Chunyikhang until the gewog centre. She then walks for more than two hours downhill to her home. Today she is carrying an LPG cylinder which she got refilled in Damphu.
Farmers say that with the road getting blocked frequently in summer, selling their farm produce is a major challenge.
A farmer in Barshong said that erosion affected the irrigation canal.
Barshong Gup Santa Lal Powdel said that not all farm roads were in bad condition except in some stretch points, adding that the gewog administration and local contractors were involved in carrying out minor maintenance.
“Landslide is a problem on roads running to Chunyikhang and Gangtokha whenever there is continuous rain,” Santa Lal Powdel said.
He said the government had approved budget for stabilising base course for 10km stretch in coming fiscal year.
“If we can stabilise 10km road this time, we will be able to do the remaining in the next two years,” he said. “Improving road conditions and making it pliable for all seasons could benefit our farmers significantly.”
He said that the drainage system would also be cemented to reduce damage to the paddy fields.