R&B deptt goes into hibernation

Vital projects stalled in Bandipora from last 5 years

Greater Kashmir
Publish Date: Dec 11 2012 12:00PM

Bandipora: Inordinate delay by the Roads and Buildings department in completion of various developmental projects across the district has raised question marks over its functioning.
 Many projects including construction of bridges in Athwatoo, Bonkoot, Gamoora besides construction of mini-secretariat are yet to be completed despite missing of deadlines. 
 Work on the bridges in Athwatoo, Bonkoot, and Gamoora started in 2007-10. Despite missing many deadlines, the bridges are still incomplete. In past one year, only base of a pillar for Athwatoo bridge has been constructed. Similarly two pillars have been constructed for the Bonkoot bridge.    
 Gamoora bridge over Arin stream was scheduled to be completed within a year. “Despite passing of over two years, work on the bridge is going on at a slow pace,” the locals said.  
 The locals minced no words to accuse the Roads & Buildings department of being hand-in-glove with some unscrupulous contractors.
 “Work on most of these bridges has been stalled to facilitate escalation of project cost in next working season. This way these constructors will make fortunes,” they said. 
 Similarly the department has failed to complete construction of mini-secretariat here. Estimated at Rs 20 crores, work on the secretariat was started in 2007. The project was scheduled to be completed in March 2010. However the deadline was extended till March 2011. As the department failed to meet the deadline, the authorities extended the deadline to March 2012. Still the department failed to complete the project.  
 During a visit to the construction site in April this year, the District Development Commissioner Bandipora had announced that the project would be completed by September. Three months have passed since then and the work is yet to be completed. 
 Sources said out of Rs 20 crores nearly 16 have been spent on the construction so far. The mini secretariat was designed to provide accommodation to 13 government offices. Presently Bandipora has about 17 district level offices, with dozens of Tehsil level offices mostly functioning either in privately rented buildings or in dilapidated government structures..
 When contacted Additional District Development Commissioner Bandipora all the pending works would be completed soon. He said work on the mini-secretariat is 95 percent complete and within two months it would be completed.
 “Bonkoot and Gamoora bridges are in final stage. However work on Athwatoo bridge has been re-tendered,” the ADDC said.