Panaji, June 12: Nearly 80 Portuguese-era bridges in Goa are in a dilapidated condition and their repair work would be taken up immediately, a state minister said today. The Goa government had last year begun an audit of all the Portuguese-era bridges in the coastal state. The exercise was taken up after the bridge across Sanvordem river in South Goa district, had collapsed in May last year, killing two people.
"We have identified 80 bridges, most of them small culverts, which are in a dilapidated condition," Goa Public Works Department (PWD) Minister Sudin Dhavalikar told reporters here. All the bridges identified so far were in North Goa district while the audit was yet to be taken up for such structures located in South Goa, he said. "It will take one more year to complete the audit of all bridges in the state," Dhavalikar said.
The bridges found to be in a bad condition would either be reconstructed or repaired immediately depending on the requirement, he said. "We are conducting an audit all the bridges that are more than 30 years old," the minister said.
The state government had last week begun the process of formulating a policy to conserve and protect the Portuguese-era structures in the state and to give a new lease of life to them. State Town and Country Planning Minister Vijai Sardesai had chaired a meeting of the conservation committee formed by his department to discuss the issue. According to him, a comprehensive policy would be tabled during the next session of the Legislative Assembly. Sardesai had said the policy will also decide on providing financial help to these structures.