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Construction work of Narayangadh-Muglin road section in extended deadline unlikely

Kumar Chaulagain, Narayan Adhikari, KALIKHOLA, CHITWAN: Severe negligence has been found in the construction of Narayangadh-Muglin road section under the ongoing road expansion drive. Narayangadh-Muglin road section is considered as a lifeline of Kathmandu. 

Passengers and good-loaded vehicles have been directly facing problems due to delay in construction of the road section in different pretexts of construction companies. It takes around 90 minutes to a vehicle to cross the 36-kilometres road section. The construction companies, however, said that the construction works have not take the expected pace as it was obstructed for nine months due to earthquake and border blockade.
Contractors shared that they have been facing problems in construction works in lack of alternative road to Narayangadh-Muglin road. Representatives of construction companies complained that earthquake, border blockade, delay in shifting electric poles and water pipeline, smooth supply of construction materials are the reasons behind delay in construction works of the road section.
Suraj Magar, who has been driving good-loaded vehicle along the road section for the past one decade said, “We have been facing traffic jam for long hours. Now we have to spend two days to reach the destination, which is only a day-long distance. We have to line up in the jam putting our lives under the risk of landslide.”
They have compulsion to buy a packet of noodle at Rs 100 as there is no option to them following the lack of shops along Narayangadh-Muglin section, he added.
Landslide has taken place more than one dozen places along four kilometers from Muglin to Kalikhola. Three police personnel have lost their lives in landslide around 10 days ago and one more police person and a van are still missing in the landslide.
Only 50 per cent construction works of has been completed so far. The agreement was signed in order to handover the road within April 2017. The deadline has been extended till December as per the demand of the construction companies.
Development Committee under the Legislature-parliament recently inspected the road section and found that construction companies making delay in construction works in very pretexts.
A team comprising Development Committee Chairperson Rabindra Adhikari asked the construction companies not to make any delay in construction of the road section, warning that action would be taken against them if construction work is not completed on time.
Adhikari said, “The construction work should be completed soon after carrying out review of weakness in course of construction.”
The Committee carried out inspection of the road section after frequent obstruction of transport service along the road section due to landslide for the past few days following road expansion drive.
Directing the construction companies, he said, “All measures will be taken to control landslide. However, the construction task should be completed on time.”
Adhikari said that the walls have not been cutting down in a scientific way and added that they are ready to provide support from government side to complete the construction works on time.
He also asked the bodies concerned to carry out road construction in a safe and reliable way keeping human sentiments in mind.
Directing Chief District Officer, Narayan Prasad Bhatta, to carry out necessary homework to carryout construction works during night and to resume transport service in day time, Adhikai urged him to provide necessary support to the construction companies.
He also asked the Narayangadh-Muglin Road construction project and consultation companies to submit a report at the Ministry within 15 days to carry out study about the works to be carried out to make road safe in a sustainable manner, pointing out the need of relocating the road-side settlements at safer place.
CDO Adhikari said although the road construction works have been carried out stopping the vehicle movement for five hours during day time, it has not become fruitful and there is no situation of completing the construction works on the slated time.
Consultant of the project, Pushkar Regmi, said that construction companies have no sufficient amount of equipments and construction works have been delayed for being failure to make arrangement of human resources and equipments.
On the occasion, Director General of the Department of Roads, Gopal Sigdel, briefed the team about the details of construction works carried out so far.
Sigdel expressed commitment of moving ahead coordinating among bodies concerned, saying the construction companies should carry out works as per the agreement.
The construction of Narayangadh-Muglin road section is being carried out at a cost of Rs 2.90 billion with the financial support of World Bank.
Narayangadh-Muglin road section is under AH42 section of Asian Highway.BLA Construction Company of India, Woodhill Construction Company of India, Lama Construction Company of Nepal, Supreme Construction Company of India and Rautaha Company of Nepal have got responsibility to construct the road section.
The road section is always remain busy as it is the main highway to entre Kathmandu from Tarai districts as well as going out of Kathmandu valley. The road section has been divided to into three sections and responsibility has been given to construction companies for the same.
Only 50 per cent construction work of first section has been carried out while 56.5 per cent construction task of second section and 47.3 per cent of third section has been completed so far.
Shishir Kandawa, representative of the construction company, accepted that construction works have not taken an expected speed due to various reasons including proper management of electric poles and drinking water pipeline, among others.
He also expressed doubt that it is difficult to complete the construction works on the extended dateline.
Further study must to control landslide
Geologist Achyut Koirala suggested the Development Committee that long-term solution should be find out by carrying out further study of landslide prone areas of the road section.
Rock anchoring and rock bolting are some major measures to control landslide, said Koirala.
According to the project, it will take around 35 minutes to a vehicle to cross the road section after the construction of the road. Now it takes around 80-90 minutes to cross it.
Similarly, the bridges along the road section are in a neglect condition. According to Engineer of the Narayangadh-Muglin road section, Shiva Khanal, there are 18 bridges along the section.RSS

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