RAWALPINDI  - Inordinate delay in completion of Chohar Chowk expansion project has turned it into scourge rather than blessing for traders and residents of the area.

Chief Minister Punjab, Mian Shahbaz Sharif inaugurated the project on March 3 and this was to be completed within three months but it is still inching towards completion despite lapse of eight months.

The slow paced work on the project is our economic murder as no citizen visits this market because the entire market remains under the grip of dust storm which is caused by construction work of road, said a group of shopkeepers.

“Due to highly thin arrival of buyers we are forced to shift to other markets. We are paying rent of the shops out of our own pockets without earning a penny. This state of affairs has constrained us to pull out our children from schools, as we cannot pay our fees,” said a group of traders.

The entire work is going on without a systematic system. Sewerage pipeline have been laid twice. Earlier cemented electric poles were installed and when they fell, iron poles were installed. This mismanagement has reached alarming proportion and will cause how much more delay in the completion of work is now a question mark on the efficiency of concerned departments.

“Water pipeline was uprooted during digging work and we are being asked to deposit demand notice amounting to Rs 3,000 again despite the fact that our earlier connections were also illegal,” said a group of residents.

The citizens and traders demanded early completion of the project, saying otherwise they would be forced to hold protest demonstrations.

Meanwhile, the number of road accidents is on the rise at the Morgah Morr area due to the lack of traffic signals on the U-turn. Traffic load multiplies during office hours, and the road becomes impassable for pedestrians. “We teach at a school in Rawat Model Town, which is on the other side of the road. We cannot cross this road due to speedy traffic during the opening and closing hours of our institutions. We have to wait for a long time to cross this road,” said a lady teacher.

“Oil tankers also ply on this road. Sometimes, our school buses get sandwiched between them due to lack of traffic signals and absence of traffic wardens. We often reach our school late due to this difficulty,” said a student.

The residents of the area complained that many elderly people and children were hit by cars on the road, while crossing the road, but the authorities had still not installed any traffic signal and appointed traffic wardens to improve the flow of traffic in the area.

The residents have demanded of the authorities to immediately install traffic signals and deploy traffic wardens on the road.