The contractor has blamed red tape for the delay in construction
Dolakha, January 5
A bridge over the Tamakoshi River in Dolakha whose construction was inaugurated nine years ago has been in limbo all these years, thanks to the faulty design and red tape.
As per the design prepared by Nepal Consultant Private Limited, the bridge would require 164 tonnes of fabrication. But fault in the design was realised after a separate design prepared by the Division Road Office of Dolakha showed the required amount of fabrication somewhere at 216 tonnes in excess of the amount envisioned by the design prepared by NCPL.
Rautaha/Om Buddha JV had won the contract for the bridge project nine years ago, but except for construction of the foundation, nothing has progressed so far.
The contractor, on his part, has blamed the red tape for the delay in the construction of the bridge, besides the faulty design.
The proposed 42-metre bridge will link Gaurishankar and Bigu Rural municipalities. “But as the bridge hasn’t been ready all these years, it has affected the people in the municipalities,” said Gaurishankar Rural Municipality chair Soyam Bahadur Khadka, adding the delay had also cause a huge inconvenience to over half a dozen under-construction hydropower projects here.
As said, the issue of who will pay for the extra amount of fabrication used for the bridge is at the bottom of the uncertainty in the construction. The issue had even reached the court from the Road Division Office of Charikot.
“Though the consultant admitted that they had done a mistake while preparing the design of the bridge, as the RDO of Charikot failed to release payment for the extra amount of fabrication to be used, we couldn’t start our work,” said Gyalbo Tamang, a representative of the contractor. Besides, there is also a dispute as to who would pay for the rise in the price of steel over the years.
Meanwhile, present DRO Dolakha chief Dharmendra Jha, on his part, pledged to take initiatives to resume the work on construction of the bridge at the earliest. “As I was transferred here just a few days ago, I will learn the situation here and take necessary initiatives to ensure that work starts,” he said.
A version of this article appears in print on January 06, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.