Not only has the four-laning of arterial Srinagar-Banihal road got delayed by 44 months—project was sanctioned in 2011, deadline was 2014— the cost of works has also escalated by Rs 116 crore, from an estimated Rs 1100.7 crore to 1216 crore.
According to Union government report, only 72 percent of the widening work on the Srinagar-Banihal side of the Srinagar-Jammu highway has been completed.
This project is being executed by the National High¬ways Authority of India (NHAI), which has allotted its work to Hyderabad-based construction company Ramky Infrastructure.
As per the documents, the Qazigund-Banihal sub-section of the Srinagar-Banihal stretch was only 67 percent complete as several issues are hampering the work progress of the project. The Qazigund-Banihal portion has two tunnels, each 8.5-km long.
On Bijbehara Bypass, work has been completed on 10km of the total 12.7 km length. Work on 3.34 km of the Awantipora Bypass is yet to be completed. Officials attri¬bute the delay to court cases against the acquisition of land.
The widening of the road was planned because landslides and shooting stones ham¬per traffic on the road during winter and rains.
As per official estimates, out of the 4,087 kanals of land involved in the construction of the road, 3,588 kanals have been acquired in Anantnag district and handed over to the NHAI. In Pulwama district, out of the 2,554 kanals of land, 1,859 kanals have been acquired till last year.