Ludhiana: Jodhewal Basti flyover finally open for commuters
After a 10-year-long wait, one leg of the controversial Jodhewal Basti flyover was finally thrown open to public today.
City mayor Balkar Singh Sandhu inaugurated the left leg of the flyover for commuters.
After the inauguration, Sandhu said the functioning of the flyover will bring a huge respite for commuters who used to remain stuck in the bottleneck.
The controversial chowk had turned into a bane for commuters and witnessed some of the worst traffic chaos and tragic accidents over the years.
To top it all, a shrine in the middle of the highway made Jodhewal Basti Chowk one of the most complicated bottlenecks of the city.
The flyover project, which started in September 2009, was to be completed by November 2011 but the project was derailed after a tug-of-war ensued between the road construction company and the shrine operators on the issue of relocating the religious place.
Commuters heading from Samrala Chowk to Jalandhar Bypass were a harried lot and had to encounter massive traffic jam at Jodhewal Basti Chowk.
As standoff pertaining to relocating the shrine remained unresolved, the national highway authorities made another move and acquired the land of a government school and demolished its structure to expand the road located near Jodhwal Basti Chowk. However, acquiring the school also did not resolve the problem.
If the encroachment on the slip roads near Jodhewal Basti was not enough, devotees visiting the shrine park their vehicles erratically on the side of the highway, leading to snarls. The wrong parking of the buses also compounds the traffic problem at Jodhewal Basti Chowk. In the absence of designated bus stops, bus drivers used to stop the vehicles at the chowk which often led to traffic jam. Rahul Verma, member of the road safety council, said one portion of the flyover from Jalandhar bypass to Sherpur Chowk was thrown open for commuters on September 26. “The resumption of traffic on both sides of Jodhewal Basti Flyover would bring huge respite for city residents. Now work will start on building the slip road and thereafter the cuts will be plugged,” said Verma.