Saturday, August 2, 2014

Minister inspects roads & bridges in West Sikkim

GANGTOK, 01 Aug [IPR]: Minister for Roads & Bridges, Garjaman Gurung, along with Parliamentary Secretary, Richenpong MLA ST Lepcha, undertook a three-day extensive tour of West District, also partially covering South District, from 26 to 28 July. They were accompanied by their PCE-cum-Secretary, TB Rajalim, Pr. CE and a host of departmental officers.
At Melli, the Minister and the Parliamentary Secretary were briefed about the double lane highway under construction from Melli to Namchi via Manpur Kitam funded under SARDP-NE. The concerned contractors during an interactive session discussed and appraised the Minister about their difficulties.
The entourage was briefed about muck disposal problems, forest encumbrances as well as problems caused by traffic. The Melli approach road too was inspected and the concerned contractor was directed to immediately complete the work.
The Manpur-Jorethang-Namchi road being developed under ADB (Asian Development Bank) funding was also inspected while on the way. The stretch of road is designed to be of intermediate lane. The Minister cautioned that the cutting works will need to be curtailed during the monsoon period.
The ADB team further briefed the Minister and his team about the project and informed that the 3 kilometer stretch from the Manpur Forest Gate could not be undertaken since they are still awaiting Forest clearances from the Central Government.
The entourage headed towards the Naya Bazaar Daramdin road. The Minister was briefed that on account of the non performance of the contractor, the work had suffered considerably. It was noted that no representative of the contractor was available for any comments.
The department however, appraised the Minister that steps are being taken to avoid delay in work completion. The Minister took stock of the work that had been done by the contractor till date. He also made a brief stop at the Bojek slip. The PCE-Secretary appraised that the next alternative would be to explore a by-pass, by constructing a new road descending to the river and then joining the existing road at some point.
The MLA Daramdin, DN Sherpa warmly greeted the team and dwelt upon the need for new connecting roads at two places. The entourage descended along the Salangdang road to the proposed Lhoduma Bridge site over Rammam to connect West Bengal.
The Minister in his address to the public touched upon the pro-people policies of the government and thanked them for their support. He further opined that with the completion of the bridge, the entire area would prosper immensely.
The panchayats were requested to immediately provide the land required for the construction of the check post as well as the allied departments that would come up. The claim for compensation should be reasonable and as per government acquisition rate, the Minister added.
The Chakung Chumbong road too was inspected. Of the total stretch, about 11 Kilometers was awaiting forest clearance, which was under process. The road that was under construction too had been affected by the monsoon rains.
On the second leg, the Bermiok-Rungdung-Legship road was inspected. The cooperative society undertaking the first few kilometers of road works was directed to complete its portion of the contract work so that the entire stretch could be completed under NLCPR. The public who had assembled too consented and agreed to the proposal. Along the stretch till the Kalej Bridge point various proposed bridge sites were inspected.
At Reshi, the Minister addressed a gathering and explained about the new Nayabazaar-Legship Double Lane Road. The Reshi Rinchenpong road under construction for carpeting work was also inspected. The Parliamentary Secretary (MLA Rinchenpong) requested the Minister to visit the Reshi Chuchen Road. On the spot decisions were taken to complete and commission the project.
Thereafter, the entourage left for Dentam where they were accorded a warm welcome by the UD&HD Minister NK Subba at Hee. The team visited the Jhangri Dhunga Road at Power Intake Point. The people who had assembled at the bridge point over Kalej Khola, interacted with the Roads & Bridges team. The contractors requested the Minister for early release of the pending bills. The Minister in turn assured them of all possible help from his department.
On the third day, the team visited the Tashiding Bridge site, which is under construction. The Minister, Roads & Bridges, stressed upon good quality work and timely completion of projects.
At Reshi Bazaar, the Minister interacted with the panchayats and the general public, regarding double laning of Naya Bazaar-Legship Road and put into consideration the proposal for diversion of proposed road taking into account the narrow space.
While on the way to Namchi, the Sikkip-Vok-Namchi Road, which is ongoing and under upgradation was inspected and the Minister expressed his satisfaction.
A brief report was presented by the Tarku Damthang Namchi contractors at Jaubari. After inspection of the road at various stretches, the team finally reached the Gurrassey road and returned to Head Quarters by night fall.
The essence of the entire exercise was to examine the proper implementation of the ongoing projects and to interact with the executing agencies besides acknowledging their difficulties while executing the projects at site. The ultimate objective of this tour was to ensure connectivity to the rural population and to benefit the general public at large by timely completion of the on-going schemes.

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