Road to Kudlu Tirtha, which passes through the villages, should be repaired: MLA

Minister for Muzrai, Ports, and Inland Water Transport Kota Srinivas Poojary said on Monday that the State government was giving priority to the development of coastal districts. He was laying the foundation stone for a minor bridge connecting Megadde and Vanajur villages, coming under the Naxalite-affected Nadpal Gram Panchayat here.

Mr. Poojary said it was essential to develop infrastructure along the 300-km coastline of the State. The Coastal Development Authority (CDA) was giving a fillip for the integrated development of the coastal districts. The government had allocated Rs. 750 crore for the CDA in the 2013-14 budget.

The government had decided to construct new buildings for 300 gram panchayats to give a thrust to rural development, he said. About Rs. 10 crore had been allotted for the development of lakes under the zilla panchayat. He would direct the district administration to facilitate power connectivity to houses not having them in Nadpal village, Mr. Poojary said.

Presiding over the function, Gopal Bhandary, Karkala MLA, said that Nadpal was among the two biggest gram panchayats in the State in terms of its geographical spread. The allocation of Rs. 50 lakh was not enough for the Megadde-Vanajar bridge, and the government should construct a good and major bridge at a cost of Rs. 10 crore, the MLA said.

Besides providing connectivity to the naxalite-affected villages, it would provide connectivity to the Kudlu Tirtha waterfalls. If a major bridge was constructed, it would help develop Kudlu Tirtha as a major tourist spot in the district and would also give a boost to the local economy. The road to Kudlu Tirtha, which passes through Vanajar and Megadde villages should be repaired at a cost of Rs. 2 crore, Mr. Bhandary said.

CDA chairman T.V. Hegde, the former MLA Sunil Kumar, Zilla Panchayat Member Manjunath Poojary, and president of Nadpal Gram Panchayat Lakshmi Dayananda were present.

Pending demand

Bhoja Shetty, a farmer, said that the bridge was a long-pending demand of the people of the Megadde. Its construction would help 70 houses in the village. “Now there is a small narrow bridge on which only two-wheelers and autorickshaws can move. The construction of a minor bridge would help during health emergencies as ambulances could then come here,” he said. “It would also provide connection to the Kudlu Tirtha waterfalls.”

Sundar Poojary, farm worker, said that even the small bridge was of not much help during floods in the monsoon season. Lachu Acharya, farmer, said that while Naxalites used to visit the nearby villages frequently, now they were rarely seen.