4-Lane Road: Completion of 2-lane portion extended to Dec 31
Road closure on Saturday & Sunday for rock blasting works
Court directs Govt. to repair alternative Dimapur-Kohima route
DIMAPUR, DECEMBER 10: Contractors for the 4-lane Dimapur-Kohima road projects have again deferred the timeline for completion of 2-lane of the 4-lane road projects for 6 days – from December 15 to December 31. And the December 31 timeline also comes with a rider – if land compensation issue, etc. are resolved, if machineries and materials are in place, etc, perhaps an indication that more excuses and delays are in the offing.
On December 2 last, the lone Lok Sabha MP from Nagaland, Tokheho Yepthomi announced that Contractors for the Dimapur-Kohima 4-lane road project have assured to complete black-topping on 2-lane of the 4-lane road by December 15. “Hon’ble Union Minister for Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, Shri Nitin Gadkari has conveyed to me the assurance of M/s Ramky – ECI (JV) and M/s Gayatri Projects Ltd to complete the Dimapur – Kohima 2 Lane Black Top by 15th December 2020 and 4 Lane by 31st March 2021,” informed the MP Lok Sabha on December 2, in a press release, much to the relief of denizens of the State.
As on November 4, 2020, Package I by M/s Ramky – ECI (JV) has completed 70.76%, Package II by M/s Ramky – ECI (JV) has completed 79.64% and Package III by M/s Gayatri Projects Ltd has completed 66.11% of Dimapur-Kohima road, he informed.
But Counsel appearing for the Package Nos. I & II Contractor told the Gauhati High Court, Kohima Bench, on December 8 that “it is possible that 2-laning would be completed by December 31, 2020 if the land compensation or issue regarding some portion of land within Package II is resolved by the State Government and the work progress at the pace it is going on at present is maintained.” He also submitted “it is possible that the whole project would be completed by March 31, 2021 if the same pace of work is maintained.” On Project No III, it was submitted that though it may be possible that the Contractor M/s Gayatri Projects Ltd would complete the project within the timeline promised by them (2-laning within December 31, 2020) and the whole project by March 31, 2021, but “this can be possible only if machineries and materials are in place.” The Counsel submitted that the only hot-mix plan installed by the Contractor is out of order and without it, it would be impossible to complete the project within the timeline given.
Counsel appearing for Contractor M/s Gayatri Projects Ltd submitted that out of 9.2 Kms, about 2.5 Kms has a landslide, therefore though the Contractor would try to complete the whole project within the timeline, it may be difficult to do so as far as the 2.5 Kms is concerned. He also submitted that the hot-mix plan would be restored in 1 or 2 days’ time but to supplement the same drum mix plan is being used to keep the timeline for completion of the project. Nagaland Governor RN Ravi has also expressed serious displeasure to NHIDCL for not keeping their assurances on the progress of the Kohima-Dimapur 4-lane highway construction and said he will take up the matter with Union Minister, MoRTH, in this regard.
Considering the submission, the Court in an order issued on December 8 directed the Contractor to file an affidavit stating that the project would be completed within the timeline (2-laning by December 31, 2020) and the whole project by March 31, 2021 before the Court closes for winter vacation.
Counsel appearing for M/s Ramky-ECI (JV) submitted that the time given for blasting rocks in poject No. I, which falls on Sundays only is not sufficient and at least 2 consecutive days in a week and 7 times, should be given.
Regarding 14 days of blocking of the road requested by the Contractor, the Court directed the State Government to do the same on Saturdays and Sundays, except December 24 & 25, 2020 and December 31, 2020 & January 1, 2021, keeping in view Christmas and New Year celebrations.
“Needless but, the Contractor should complete the blasting of the road during the period within which the road would be blocked in order to avoid causing any further inconvenience to the public,” the Court order said.
Further, the Court directed the State Government to repair the road through which diversion is given to the road under Package Nos. I & II within a week, so that suffering of the people travelling on that road due to the bad condition of the same would at least be relieved to some extent.
In the hearing, Counsel for National Highway and Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited (NHIDCL) told the Court that the Contractors have not kept the timeline agreed in the contract agreement and in the assurances given by them.
The Court listed the matter for hearing again immediately after winter vacation on January 18, 2021. (Page News Service)