In a fresh warning to the J&K government, the Government of India has directed it complete more than four-year-old incomplete road projects taken up under the Pradhan Mantri Gram SadakYojana (PMGSY) by March 31, 2016 or else bear their cost escalation beyond the deadline.
Upset over the State government's poor performance under the road connectivity program, the Union Rural Development Ministry in a recent communiqué has directed the Commissioner/Secretary Roads & Building, RohitKansal, to speed up the execution of projects under the program.
"Secretary Rural Development recently reviewed the progress of PMGSY works in your state and expressed serious concern over the large number of incomplete (projects) which are more than four years pending for completion (sic)," reads the letter (D.O.No. P.17026/6/2013, dated January 12, 2016—copy of which is with Greater Kashmir.
The Ministry pointed out that 275 works taken up under the program are incomplete despite being more than four-year-old.
"As per the monthly report submitted by the State of J&K (November 2015) against the 1983 number of works sanctioned by the Ministry, 1248 works have been completed. Notably, 735 number of works, including 275 works which are more than four-years-old are still incomplete, which is a matter of serious concern since PMGSY works are required to be completed within 12 months," the letter states.
Asking State government to complete the old works by March 31, 2016, the GoI letter reads: "The State should immediately focus on those road works which are more than 4-years-old and still incomplete. It has been decided that spill-over financial liability of such works beyond 31st March 2016 will have to be borne by the State government."
"I would therefore request your personnel attention on the matter on a priority and also request you to direct State Rural Road Development Agency to accelerate the execution of PMGSY works in such a fashion that substantial works of more than four years old are completed physically and financially by March 31, 2016," the letter to Kansal further states.
PMGSY was launched in J&K in 2000 to provide all-weather connectivity to unconnected habitations in rural areas with population of 500 persons.
The Government of India bears the full cost of the road construction/improvement of roads.
The GoI has often criticized state government for "dismal" performance under the program since its start.