Neten Dorji | Bumdeling

March 13 — I was traveling to Bumdeling from Tsharzam in Trashiyangtse. Scenery besides, it was a horrible ride. Never have I seen such a bad road anywhere in any part of the country.

If you are driving a small car, you could get stuck on this road. The road is not just too narrow but also filled with crater-size potholes.

It took me more than 45 minutes to reach Bumdeling, which actually is a 15-minute drive from Yangtse town.

The condition of the road, as it is, has been bad for as long as commuters can remember.

“No authority is talking about the need to improve the condition of the road,” said a villager. It is particularly difficult for the farmers who take local produce to the market.

Regular commuters say that the 8.5 km road was blacktopped in 2017, or thereabouts.

Bumpa Wangmo, a villager, said that because of the bad condition of the road, taxi fare has also increased. “The fare has gone up to Nu 150 from Nu 100.”

A driver, Dawa, said that there is no effort to maintain the road. “Every time, with the onset of monsoon, potholes grow.”

Another driver said that the road condition is bad because of the poor drainage system. “Road has become worse than the farm road. The gewog must improve drainage.”

He questioned who is going to repair this road, the gewog or dzongkhag.

Local government officials said that heavy vehicles destroy the road.

Bumdeling Gup Mani Dorji said the dzongkhag administration told the contractors to fill the potholes but has not done so yet. “We could not allocate the budget for road improvement in the last financial year.”

But the gewog has allocated a budget of Nu 1.1 million for road improvement this time.