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Winning road for waterman

- Year-long crusade yields repair funds

When Jamshedpur’s water Samaritan hit the road for a repair cause, he made sure the state government woke up and listened.

A committed zilla parishad member, Parsudih-based transporter Raj Kumar Singh led a relentless campaign for the repair of the 12.5km link between Golpahari and Asanboni on city outskirts for a year

Recently, the state rural development department shelled out repair funds worth Rs 6.64 crore.

Singh, already in the limelight for sponsoring drinking water from his own pocket during summers in Parsudih and Haludbani, proved he had the stamina to lead a sustained agitation for road repair funds. Over the past year, Singh led protests at the deputy commissioner’s office and block office.

Now, the funds doled out by the department to East Singhbhum district administration will be used to repair the arterial link daily used by a lakh-plus commuters.

People who use the now-dilapidated road are petty vegetable vendors, daily wage labourers and the like.

Singh, felicitated on Sunday by people from Haludbani panchayat, Jamshedpur block, for successfully prodding the state government on road repair funds, said he was delighted he could mobilise support.

“I am happy the rural development department recently sanctioned Rs 6.64 crore for the road repair project. The road is a livelihood lifeline for over a lakh people every day. We expect it will be repaired in six months,” Singh told The Telegraph.

Singh and some village heads who had led the agitation were feted at Khasmahal Durga Puja Maidan. The 7,000-plus audience was in a festive mood. “The road, owned by the rural development department, hasn’t been repaired since a decade. We are grateful that funds have come now,” Laxmi Hansdah, a panchayat samiti member, said.

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