Thursday, April 28, 2005

Officials criticised for slow pace of work

Officials criticised for slow pace of work

The Hindu

400 km of roads asphalted, 300 km metalled: official

BANGALORE: The Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BMP) engineering officials came under fire at the BMP Council meeting on Wednesday for the slow pace of road asphalting works in the city.

Members from all parties pointed out that the civic body's ambitious project to asphalt 1,000 km of roads at a cost of Rs. 130 crores by the end of April has come to a standstill.

Seeking reason for the delay in the completion of works, the members said that the roads in their areas had become unusable after the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) dug them to change the underground drainage lines.

"Though we had announced an April end deadline for asphalting of roads under the `complete blacktop' project, there is no sign of work going on. Monsoon is approaching and we are sure work will spill over to the next year. We are answerable to the people," the BJP floor leader, B.M. Mangala, said.

The ruling party leader, B.T. Sreenivas Murthy, the Opposition leader, B.R. Nanjundappa, the Janata Dal (U) leader, Padmanabha Reddy, the BJP member, B.S. Satyanarayana, and others joined her.

The BMP Commissioner, K. Jothiramalingam, admitted that work was delayed. He directed the Engineer-in-Chief, Ramegowda, to give a detailed explanation.

Mr. Ramegowda said over 400 km of the 1,000 km had been asphalted and over 300 km had been metalled. "We have completed 60 per cent of the work and the remaining work will be completed by the end of May," he said.

The members, who said they were not satisfied with the reply, sought to know how the remaining work could be completed within a month. "Roads in my ward have not even been metalled. How can you complete asphalting by the end of May? This is only an assurance," Mr. Nanjundappa said.

On the outsourcing of maintenance of 1,225 km of roads, Mr. Ramegowda admitted that the contractors had failed to adhere to the specifications. "We have observed that their work is not satisfactory. So we have withheld payments," he added.


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