IMPHAL, October 30: The report of the monitoring committee constituted by the Guahati High Court to conduct inspection of work progress along the National Highway-37, Imphal-Jiribam has stated that the condition of the highway as a whole is not traffic worthy and is in a deplorable condition.
The court after having gone through the report has directed the Chief Vigilence Officer, to investigate the progress of the development/repairing of the national highway and the alleged misappropriation of funds by the BRTF/GREF.
As per the report, the condition of the 84 km road stretch from Tera Oriental Collge gate to near Awangkhul is in good condition and has no traffic hindrances. However, the 112 km road stretch from Awangkhul to Rengpang electricity sub station is showing signs of distress. 50 percent of the black topping has been extensively damage at various stretches. The vehicles are negotiating these stretches with difficulty and great discomfort, the report has stated.
From Rengpang to Nungba, 125 km, the metalled (WBM) and black topped portions are damaged with numerous pot holes, which has not only impeded the traffic flow but also causes damages to the vehicles. The WBM is missing at most of the stretches and vehicles are negotiating with extreme difficulty. It warned that the road will become unfit for vehicles if immediate action is not taken.
Further the report said that the portion from Nungba to Barak (145 km) is highly deplorable and has specific portions which are practically unfit for any type of traffic. In between 136 km to 139 km in the Kambiron area wheel ruts of depths exceeding 1.50 metre and muddy slushes have developed and making it impossible for vehicles to traverse while the road surface has sunk by more than one metre from the ground level. The only way through the muddy route for commercial vehicles is to be dragged by excavator and it will not be fit for any vehicles to pass through the stretch during the rainy season, it said.
The drain running along the road is not functioning well due to lack of maintenance.
The condition of the stretch from 145 km to 190 km Makru lays in similar condition. The narrow strip of road from 145 km and 153 km is making extremely hazardous for vehicles to take over, mentioned the report.
The report also stressed upon the need of improving bridges between 190 to 221 km-Jiribam stretch.
As per the report, the number of labour deployed at the work site is 156 and assisted by one procland, two JCBs, eight trucks, one water truck, one air compressor and two compacted vibrator rollers.
The committee in the report while terming the NH-37 as not traffic worthy has further observed that the labour, material and machinery mobilized at the site are not adequate.
In the meantime, Transporters and Drivers Council (TDC) today condemned the cabinet meet held yesterday for failing to discuss the issue of the ill fated trucks damaged in the ongoing economic blockade and the counter blockade imposed on both the national highways in the state.
Speaking to media persons in this regard, H Tiken, president TDC, has announce to halt all its initiatives to provide assistance for stranded trucks along the National Highway 37, Imphal-Jiribam.
He said that the council has been rescuing trucks stuck along the highway using recovery vans and other relevant equipments however the yesterday’s cabinet meet has failed to acknowledge the initiative taken by the council, he further claimed.
The national highways are the only lifeline of the state but the NH-2 (formerly known as NH-39) has become a place for several organizations to call blockade monthly or a safe haven for extortionist and other criminals, he said.
On the other hand, the National Highway 37 has not been properly maintained and develop by the BRTF, who is entrusted with the works, further informed the TDC president. Following the failure of the BRTF to discharge its duty a social worker name H. Kulamani, filed a PIL to the Union of India and other relevant agency handling the work stating that the NH-37 is not at all motorable.
Subsequently, the court summoned the commandant of the BRTF to appear before the court and submit a progress report of the developmental works however due to a disputed question of fact mentioned in the report, the court ordered to constitute a monitoring committee to appraise the report before the court.
The monitoring committee comprises of commander BRTF, SE civil PWD, a police officer of the rank of DIG, director Transport, a senior advocate Guwahati High court, DC Tamenglong, chief engineer or his representatives of NF Railway line in Manipur and Ngangom Haridas, general secretary TDC.
The committee will submit its report every month or within the period provided by the court, said H. Ranjit.