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Road for rebel-hit Jhumra

Residents of Jhumra hills can now use a cycle or hitch a ride in vehicle to come down to Rahwan village and sell their wares as their only road link was completed and thrown open for public use on Friday.

Although Union rural development minister Jairam Ramesh wanted to inaugurate the crucial 14km link between Maoist bastion Jhumra and Rahwan, the model code of conduct for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls came in his way. Hence, no official state programme took place to announce the completion of his dream project. Instead, the CRPF declared the road open.

The villagers’ joy knew no bounds as they danced and sang and expressed their gratitude to the CRPF jawans, who ensured round-the-clock security at the construction site to speed up work.

“It was our long-pending demand to build the road. I had given up all hope that I would see the metalled link in my lifetime,” said Rameshwar Prasad Mahto (71).

The road will boost security in the area too.

Commandant of 26th battalion of CRPF Sanjay Kumar said that from now onwards, choppers would not be required to fetch jawans in case of any Maoist insurgency.

“We will reach Jhumra from Rahawan by road in 20 minutes. As the newly laid Rahawan-Jhumra Road is over nine inches thick and 20-feet wide, placing explosives below it will be a tough job for the rebels. It can be detected from a considerable distance,” he said.