The PWD claimed that work has started when The Sangai Express contacted them today .
The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) sanctioned Rs 370.33 crore in November last year for development of Mao-Koubru Leikha section of the same highway including expansion, construction of culverts, laying of wet mix mecadam topped by dense bitumen macadam which would be covered with a layer of concrete .
As the working or dry season is very short in the entire North East region including Manipur, there is a custom in the State of completing all file process including tenders before the end of rainy season and starting road development works as soon as dry season sets in .
Now the rainy season is almost over and tender for development of Mao-Koubru Leikha section has also been completed .
The same section is divided into two portions namely; Mao-Senapati and Senapati-Koubru Leikha .
One top ranking official of PWD’s National Highway Division said that development of both the portions has been started but one official of Bhartiya Infra Project Limited contended that the road development works are yet to kick off .
Nonetheless, the PWD official maintained that hot mix plant as well as stone crushing machine have been installed with the road development works already started .
In the meantime, improvement work of 15 Kms long NH-137-A (Sekmaijin-Kakching) has also started.
Filling in potholes along Imphal-Moreh highway has begun .
The existing breadth of the black-topped portion of Imphal-Yaingangpokpi road is seven metres.
There is a margin of 1.5 m on each side of the road which is not black-topped .
The margins would also be black-topped and the road would be expanded to 10 metres.
The road expansion has already begun, said the official .
While ABCI has started filling in potholes on Torbung Bangla-Nachou Panthung road, HVS Constructions Private Limited has started the same work on Nachou Panthung-Malom depot road .
Yet, one official of the Bhartiya Infra Project Limited contended that construction work of Mao-Koubru Leikha highway is yet to take off although minor repairing has been going on to make the highway passable in the interest of public .
The ongoing work is limited to laying a layer of stones .
The highway construction work would begin only after the ‘Appointed Date’ is given but the same has not been given yet .
No memorandum has been signed yet and the appointed date should be given after a memorandum has been inked, said the construction company’s official .
Compared to the time when cost estimates were made and the tender was held for development of the two portions of the Mao-Koubru Leikha highway, both the portions have now deteriorated to the extreme.
It would require additional funds to repair the highway to the condition that existed when the cost estimates were made and tender was held.
Whatever extra costs incurred in the developing the highway should be borne by MoRTH.
Bhartiya Infra Project Limited is only awaiting a clearance from the State PWD whether it would handle the part of developing the two portions to the condition that existed when the cost estimates were made and tender was held or the company should handle this part too.
If the latter is the case, PWD should give a written undertaking to the Bhartiya Infra Project Limited .
It is this ambiguity which is delaying the highway development work, said the official .
Nonetheless, necessary modern machinery have been installed for development of Mao-Koubru Leikha highway, added the official.
Source: The Sangai Express