RAHA, Aug 12 - At a time when the government is spending crores of rupees for development of infrastructure and construction of roads in the State, the people are still facing numerous difficulties in surface communication due to illegal nexus between some concerned officials and contractors, who are resorting to unfair means while executing various projects.
One such glaring example of corruption is the construction of the Amsoi-Bhoksong via Dalimbari Road under Umpanai PWD Road Division in West Karbi Anglong.
Local residents have alleged that contractor Ajanta Kalita of Birpara in Kamrup district has not followed norms as specified in the DPR, thereby using inferior quality material in construction of the main road connecting Amsoi Tiniali to Bhoksong.
The 15.67-km road is being constructed under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) at an estimated cost of Rs 10.78 crore and funded by the Union Ministry of Rural Development.
It is alleged that the construction work is of very low quality in many places. The local residents informed that the road construction work which began in March 2019 was targeted to be completed by December 3 the same year. Though the construction work is yet to be completed, the road has already developed cracks and chunks of bitumen have chipped and loosened, obviously breaking when a vehicle passes over it.
One can easily remove the bitumen with bare hands, which clearly suggests that there has been massive irregularities in the road construction process.
Expressing displeasure over the use of substandard road construction material, the locals have demanded exemplary punitive action against the individuals and agencies executing the road project.
�The work is of substandard quality. As the quality of the material used is very poor, the road will be unfit for plying of vehicles very soon,� alleged one Sorkar Phangcho, a local resident.
�Thousands of people and other commuters of this hilly area depend on this road for their daily needs. We request the concerned officials to initiate a probe into the matter and take action against the contractor and those who are involved,� said Sarim Phangcho, another local resident.
The locals alleged that the road construction work has been carried out as per the sweet will of the concerned officials from Ulukunchi PWD subdivision and as per the wish of the contractor. As there is no drainage system along the road, the locals alleged that the concerned officials overlooked such irregularities in the construction work.
On the other hand, the locals smell a rat as they claim that the Ulukunchi PWD subdivision is trying to give a clean chit to the contractor at the cost of the commuters and scarce public funds.
�There may be a secret deal between the Ulukunchi PWD subdivision officials and the contractor,� Rupan Ronghang, village head of Ahomborai village alleged.
Despite repeated complaints in this regard by the locals, the concerned departmental officials have not shown any seriousness towards the issue.
The local villagers have been running from pillar to post complaining about the low quality work, but all in vain. They are of the view that use of substandard construction material, lack of supervision and unholy nexus between the contractor and officials has led to this substandard work.
Meanwhile, the locals have demanded that the contractor and executing agency officials concerned should be grilled over the issue. They also underlined the need for judicious use of public funds.