2.2 km-lomg road waiting pavement for over 22 months

GANDAKI, MAY 12: Due to the sheer irresponsibility of the contractor and oversight bodies, a 2.2 km-long stretch along the mid-hill highway in the Kaski district has been awaiting pavement for nearly two years. The four-lane road from Harichowk to Yamdi in the district, under the mid-hill highway, is smooth, but the stretch has been left unpaved for 22 months.

According to the highway project office in Parbat, the construction and upgrading works of the road section did not progress due to negligence on the part of Motidan Construction Service Pvt Ltd. The contractor company was awarded the contract in August 2022 to complete the road within two years. However, much to the dismay, the work remains incomplete, informed Kalpana Adhikari, office chief.

The deadline for the contract has been extended until mid-April next year since the construction work remains incomplete, said Adhikari. Other factors contributing to the delay in the construction of the road are electricity pole placement, drinking water pipe management, and payment, she explained. She further divulged that they would terminate the contract but decided to extend the agreement after the contractor company reaffirmed its commitment to accelerate the work.

The office chief also admitted that the delay of their project office making timely payments to the contractor companies also affected the construction works to some extent. Passengers who travel on this road section also face inconvenience due to the unpaved road. Not only has their journey become tedious, but it has also become more difficult because of the puddles and potholes developed along the road section, they complained.

There is an increasing risk of road accidents due to the deplorable condition of the road section, on which hundreds of vehicles travel to and from the western belt of Parbat, Baglung, Myagdi, Mustang, Rukum Purba, among other districts, daily. The road is the main one in the locality, connecting it to the capital of Gandaki province, Pokhara.