Rain and flash flood damages two suspension bridges in Lhuntse

Heavy rain on July 28 damaged a suspension bridge in Kilung village, affecting about 50 households and students of Thimyul Lower Secondary School in Lhuntse.

Kilung-Somshing tshogpa, Sonam Lhamo, said the dzongkhag officials, after visiting the site, advised people not to use the Kilung suspension bridge since it is risky.

She said that the villagers requested officials to construct a temporary bridge, as many farmers, who own wetlands in Thimyul, are affected. “The school could not lift the rations on time because of the lack of a bridge.”

The tshogpa explained that although there is an alternative way, it takes much longer. “The initial 10 to 15 minutes journey was increased to about three hours.”

She said the dzongkhag authorities advised the day-scholar students to be kept in boarding schools.

Meanwhile, a flash flood on July 17 damaged more than 11 acres of land, washed away few domestic animals, an electric pole, irrigation canals and a mini hydropower supply water in Shawa village of Gangzur gewog.

The flood also washed away a suspension bridge in Rotpa.

A teacher of Thimyul shedra, Pema Wangda, said that 11 households of Rotpa village, the shedra and two households in Thimyul village are affected after the flood washed away the suspension bridge in Rotpa. “It affected the students more.”

He said that the monks, who go to offer Soelkha and conduct daily rituals to a nearby monastery, had to stop the chore.

Pema Wangda explained that they have to now take a long journey to go to the nearest road point, which takes about an hour. “When the bridge was there, it only took about five to 10 minutes.”

He also said the flood destroyed some acres of belonging to the shedra.

A parent, Dawa, said that the children from Rotpa study in Thimyul lower secondary school now take two to three hours to reach the school. “It is risky for us to send our children to school on rainy days.”

Lhuentse dzongdag Jambay Wangchuk said that both the suspension bridges are not fit to be used but there is an alternative route.

He also said we cannot do anything about it immediately. “We will discuss what to do about it.”

Tashi Phuntsho | Lhuntse

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