close
Wednesday April 24, 2024

Flood losses in Swat feared to be beyond imagination

The road between Bahrain and Kalam which was built in 2018 for Rs10 billion cost, no longer exists for several kilometres as it was washed away in the flash floods

By Mushtaq Yusufzai
August 30, 2022
View of destruction after floods hit Swat on Friday, August 26, 2022. —PPI
View of destruction after floods hit Swat on Friday, August 26, 2022. —PPI

PESHAWAR: The damage caused by the devastating floods to road infrastructures and bridges between Kalam and Bahrain as well as in the adjoining hilly areas of Swat is beyond imagination.

A government official in Peshawar told The News that it was too early to predict losses caused by the floods triggered by the days long torrential rain to infrastructure, particularly roads and bridges in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, saying “losses are likely to be in billions of rupees and beyond capacity of the provincial government to handle”.

Pleading anonymity, he said the KP government must sink personal political differences with the federal government and should seek assistance in the rescue and relief operations in the flood affected areas of the province.

The road between Bahrain and Kalam which was built in 2018 for Rs10 billion cost, no longer exists for several kilometres as it was washed away in the flash floods. There is no more hustle and bustle in Bahrain bazaar and the once a busy tourist destination is now wearing a deserted look.

Major hotel washed away in Kalam as rains wreak havoc in Swat Friday, August 26, 2022. —PPI
Major hotel washed away in Kalam as rains wreak havoc in Swat Friday, August 26, 2022. —PPI

Most of the hotels were swept away by the floodwaters. The beautiful narrow bazaar seems like a river as the river water is now flowing on the main raid as if there was no road before at all.

The two bridges, a masjid and a number of hotels and other infrastructures have been damaged beyond repair. Keeping in view four years rule of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf(PTI) at the Centre, one can’t hope they will ever repair the roads and bridges in future as former federal communications minister Murad Saeed could not build a few bridges on Kalam-Bahrain road during his tenure, though some people believe he had delayed the bridges to inflict losses to the party’s political rival Amir Muqam as the contract had been allotted to his construction company. Similarly, the rescue and relief operation started by the KP government is stated to be quite slow and not organised.