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Srinagar-Banihal highway misses another deadline
70% work completed
8/3/2016 11:15:34 PM
Saqib Junaid

Early Times Report

SRINAGAR, Aug 3: The mega four laning of Srinagar-Banihal highway which has already missed a couple of deadlines in the past has umissed the third deadline as only 75 percent work on the project has been completed so far.
In 2011, the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) awarded the contract of four-lanning of 70-km-long Anantnag-Srinagar-Banihal portion of the Srinagar-Jammu highway to Ramky Constructions, and the deadline for the project was set as December 2014 by the (NHAI) but due to many road blocks the project has been delayed.
The then Chief Minister Omar Abdullah had issued the direction to the NHAI to ensure timely completion of Srinagar -Jammu highway on priority basis in less possible time. Five years after its inauguration the progress on the project is slow for which the authorities cite different reasons.
Sources said that the delay in completing the project is due to its failure to engage adequate men and machinery by ramky for construction of 70-km portion of the highway.
Official at Ramky told Early Times that the project missed the July 2016 deadline as only 75 percent of the work has been completed.
He said they have four laning of Srinagar to Banihal will be completed by early next year, adding they have asked the government to further extend the deadline.
"75 percent of the project has been completed right now and we had earlier sought extension in the deadline up to next year. But due to many reasons the project couldn't be completed and now we have asked the NHAI that it will take some more time,"
Official sources at NHAI said blamed the State government, saying that the delay in the land acquisition by the government has created hurdles in the early completion of the project.
"There were a lot of reasons that led to the delay in the completion of the project. The government took a lot of time in the land acquisition which was around 75000 hectares. The process was to be completed under the J&K land acquisition act by the government. As now the process has been completed it will take less time to complete," official said.
As per official estimates out of 4,087 kanals of land involved in the construction of the road, 3,588 kanals were acquired in Anantnag district and handed over to the NHAI, and in Pulwama district out of 2,554 kanals of land, 1,859 kanals were acquired for the project till last year. Due to the delay in the completion of the project the commuters have to face severe inconveniences while passing through the route. "Traffic jams are the order of the day here andwe have to spend hours in traffic jams.
If the four lanning was completed on time then the vehicle could ply from the both sides,"said Mugees Shafi a driver. It would be worth to mention that Afcon construction, a competitor of Ramky, completed the Udhampur- Jammu four lane stretch in time despite working in mountainous terrain.
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