Peeved with slow progress in construction work of the National Highway-37 stretch from Oriental College gate to New Keithelmabi, a team led by Minister Sapam Ranjan and Patsoi MLA Sapam Kunjakeshore @ Keba reportedly warned the contractor concerned of immediate termination of the contract works.
The incident comes in the wake of a letter from Union Minister Road Transport and Highway, Nitin Gadkari, to Manipur Works Minister Govindas Konthoujam to expedite the Right of Way (ROW) in connection with the ongoing works of 2-lane with paved shoulders along Imphal-Jiribam section of NH-37 (package-1).
Minister Sapam Ranjan along with MLA S Kunjakeshore Singh, DK Choudhury; executive director (p) Regional office NHIDCL Imphal and Engineers conducted a joint site inspection of the NH 37 stretch from Oriental College gate to New Keithelmanbi (PKG 1 of NHIDCL project).
The minister lead team peeved with the slow progress of Highway construction asked the contractor Avantika, to complete the black topping of the stretch within this week failing it warned to request to Government of India for immediate termination of the contractor in view of the progress works.
On October 15, Nitin Gadkari in a letter addressed to Manipur Works Minister Govindas Konthoujam stated, “Kindly refer to the D.O letter no. 26/3/22(7)-M (Works & YAS), on June 13, 2022 regarding the construction of RCC covered drain at the edge of ROW in connection with ongoing works of 2-lane with paved shoulders in the Imphal-Jiribam section of NH-37 (package-1) in the state of Manipur.
I have got the matter examined and would like to inform you that NHIDCL has already instructed the EPC contractor for the same. However, the construction of drain work at the edge of ROW was acquired by BRO long back and for which compensation was also released & disbursed by CALA to the land owner except for 68 patadars.
In view of the above, may I request you to kindly issue necessary directions to the concerned officer for arranging encumbrance free ROW (45.0m) which has already been acquired by the central government, and expedite the early publication of notification in order to enable expeditious completion of the state.”
On the other hand, the district administration Imphal West has notified ROW clearance for 24 metres only for the said highway according to an eviction order issues November 20, 2021 and this lack of clarity on the part of the state administration is hindering the work progress of the highway, according to unnamed NHIDCL officials.