Margherita, September 25, 2019:

Margherita Students’ Association has demanded construction of permanent bridge over the Tirap river or else it will boycott the upcoming elections.

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More than 70,000 residents of villages in Assam’s Margherita have access to just one wooden boat to cross the Tirap river. Residents of Chipe Gaon, Kuhiarbari and ten other villages have been struggling to keep up with their travel woes due to lack of proper transport means.

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Assistant Education Secretary of the All Adivasi Students’ Association of Assam (AASAA), Sanjib Toppo says, “Being a student of Ledo College in Margherita, I have to struggle hard to study. I have to cross the Tirap river on a single wooden boat to reach college. It is the only way students can reach their schools and colleges.” The Association demands that a permanent bridge be constructed over the Tirap by the Assam Government.

Around a thousand students from these villages have to travel to their institutes through the only boat available. Life has been difficult in this part of Margherita but according to Toppo, neither former 4-time Margherita Congress MLA Pradyut Bordoloi nor Present MLA Bhaskar Sharma and Margherita Administration(Civil) have given importance to construct a permanent bridge over the Tirap river.

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It is to be mentioned here that a temporary bridge was constructed over the Tirap but heavy rainfall had washed it away, leaving a single boat to the rescue of the villagers. “Many a times when the boatman falls sick, the daily life comes to a standstill. We regret voting for the ones who don’t pay attention to our pain and agony,” said Toppo.

He further added that if the Assam Government does not pay attention to construct the permanent bridge, the residents of over ten villages will boycott the upcoming elections.

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