Thousands of people of three villages in Barguna's Amtali upazila are facing immense sufferings as a concrete bridge, damaged about two years ago, still lies without repair.
In a bid to reduce their sufferings, villagers set up a wooden platform on the concrete structure of the bridge after its original platform broke down about two years ago.
Local Government Engineering Department (LGED) built the 150-foot-long bridge, on Gojkhali Canal, in 2011-12 fiscal year to ease communication between Amtali upazila headquarter and Barguna town as well as nearby Patuakhali district.
Since the construction of the bridge, about 20,000 people, especially school and college going children, of Krishnanagar, Patakata and Rawgha villages in the upazila had been getting benefit by using the bridge everyday.
Locals said the bridge became unfit to use about two years ago due to lack of renovation since its construction about eight years ago.
Later, villagers in cooperation with the local union parishad temporarily repaired the bridge and made it usable by setting up a wooden platform in place of the damaged concrete floor.
Villagers are compelled to use the risky bridge as there are a number of educational institutions, weekly markets and bazars surrounding the bridge.
Many students from Krishnanagar, Patakata and Rawgha villages have to attend their institutions by crossing the risky bridge everyday, Headmaster of Kukua Adarsha High School Mohammad Faruque said, adding that the authorities concerned should take immediate steps to repair the bridge, considering interest of the school kids.
Local resident Abdul Maleque said the local people, especially school kids, have to cross the important bridge amid risk of accident.
Kukua Union Parishad Chariman Borhan Uddin alias Masum Talukder said the damaged bridge badly needs renovation, adding that he has asked the higher authority to repair the dilapidated bridge.
LGED Engineer in Amtali Mohammad Nazrul Islam said he will take necessary steps in this regard after visiting the spot.