MANGALORE : There were serpentine queues of vehicles on either side of the road on
the cursed Baikampady over bridge on the National Highway 17 on December 3, Friday
after a lorry got stuck on the middle of the road due to a technical snag.
If this incident took place at around 11.30 am, soon vehicles queued up on either side of
the road, creating a traffic blockade that took several hours to clear. This bridge which is
known for creating traffic snarls quite often, on Friday however was in a situation as if
it had fallen to the fire from the frying pan. Several people traveling in various vehicles,
were stuck up for hours together.
At one stage, vehicles were seen lined up upto Kulai Honnakatte on one side and Kulur
on the other side forcing the people curse the authorities.
The National Highway 17 which passes through four states namely Karnataka, Kerala,
Goa and Maharashtra is one of the busiest highways. Presently, the four-laning of the
road from Suratkal to Bantwal is in progress in view of the heavy density of vehicles on
this stretch in the recent years. But the regret is that this project is still limping even after
five years since it commenced with people wondering when this ambitious project would
be finally complete.
The irony is that neither the district administration nor the elected representatives have
bothered much about the issue despite the frequent traffic snarls. In fact, the VIPs who
visit the area fail to understand the problem as whenever they arrive traffic is cleared for
their vehicles to pass smoothly.
Will Baikampady bridge be widened ?
It is still quite unsure if the Baikampady bridge would be widened. However, Gavasane
Chief of the Mangalore Division of the National Highway Authority of India says the
process of inviting tenders for the project is underway. He also adds that the project
would be complete within one year of taking up the works.
But who knows when this project that has not yet taken up be completed ?
In fact Karavali Ale and the Canara Times Chief BV Seetaram had recently held
discussions with Deputy Commissioner Subodh Yadav on the need to four-lane the
Baikampady bridge. He had also brought to the notice of the DC the frequent traffic
blockades which the road was witnessing, greatly inconveniencing the general public.