84 projects executed in Baghlan this year
PUL-I-KHUMRI (Pajhwok): More than 80 development projects have been completed this solar year in northern Baghlan province, but new schemes could not be initiated due to security problems, officials said on Sunday.
Rural Rehabilitation Director Abdul Rab Hakimi said the projects included the gravelling of 320 kilometres of roads, construction of 27 bridges, 1,000 culverts, 50 mini hydropower plants and 1,130 wells.
During the period, he added, 35,100 metres of retaining walls were constructed, 17-km water channels cleaned, 15 irrigation networks, 26 buildings for schools, three km of fencing and 54 water reservoirs built.
He said the projects, which benefited 37,000 families, cost above $3 million provided by the Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development under the National Solidarity Programme (NSP).
Mohammad Hashimi, the local development council head in Khanjar Abad village on the outskirts of provincial capital Pul-i-Khumri, said an irrigation project had been completed in their village, benefiting over 380 families.
He recalled previously residents would fetch contaminated water using animals and cars from a two-kilometer distance. “Now potable water is available at homes.”
However, residents of Burka district said insecurity was a major hurdle to the implementation of NDS projects in the town.
Sayed Nazar, a resident said, they were deprived of the second round of NSP projects due to insecurity while their neighbouring district had benefitted.
The first round of NSP projects has brought positive changes to the lives of people, he said, adding now residents had access to paved roads, potable and irrigation water, bridges, etc.
But due to insecurity, he said, the second round could not be initiated.
Burka district is 80 kilometers away from Pul-i-Khumri and it shares border with Kunduz province.
Residents said they were concerned over the presence of illegal armed groups who had been creating problems for development projects.
They complained the 30 km road that connects the town to Nahrin district, was in a rundown condition and as a result patients often died reaching hospital.
The rural development director, Hakimi, said the second round of NSP projects would be implemented in remaining districts next year.
Police spokesman Javed Basharat said 90 percent areas in Burka district were secure for development projects and security will be improved in the remaining parts until next year.
He confirmed militants had been active in some villages, but said clean up operations would be launched soon to pave the ground for development projects.
So far 767 development projects have been implemented in Baghlan under the NSP through 987 local development councils with a cost of $26 million.
Currently, 678 development projects are underway in the provincial capital and districts under the programme, with residents expecting more facilities.
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