Rs 2,000 cr contractor bills pending in J&K

With J&K government failing to liquidate works liabilities, the unpaid contractor bills have accumulated to the tune of Rs 2000 crore in the state.

According to a senior government official, the Governor administration had asked all the departments to come up with the details of unpaid bills on account of work done, after the contractors had boycotted developmental works across the state.

“The preliminary estimates put the accumulated unpaid bills at over Rs 2000 crore which is a staggering amount that the state owes to its contractors,” he said adding that “unpaid bills have accumulated due to the fact that previous governments have got works done overlooking the budgetary provisions as a result of which liabilities have mounted to this extent.”

The government is finding it difficult to raise funds to clear such a huge debt.

‘This liability has accumulated since 2014. Governor administration is now working on clearing a part of the liability in order to persuade contractors to resume work as their boycott has caused an embarrassment for the administration,” he said.

Another official in the finance department informed that Chief Secretary BVR Subrahmanyam has asked the finance department to clear the bills.

“Now we are working out on modalities as the amount cannot be released in one go, therefore the amount will be released in instalments,” he added.

Ironically, work on all developmental projects in the state has been grounded following the decision of Jammu and Kashmir Joint Contractors Coordination- an amalgam of over 30,000 contractors –to boycott works following non-payment of bills.

Meanwhile a delegation of JKJCCC also met the Chief Secretary on Wednesday at Civil Secretariat.

Chairman, JKJCCC, Ghulam Jeelani Purza said, “We presented a memorandum of demands to the CS to which he acknowledged that the state government has a liability of Rs 2000 crore towards contractors.”

“He assured that they would release the payments in installments so that the grievance of the contractor fraternity is redressed,” Purza said adding that they thanked the state government for starting work on languishing projects which were pending for over 2 decades in the state.