Liwang-Jalajal road project left incompleteLocal residents have filed complaints at the district administration office about the delay in the project’s completion and the inferior quality of the road.
A road project linking Jaljala with Liwang, the district headquarters of Rolpa, has been left incomplete even after 10 months of the project deadline.
Rautaha/Harihari JV Construction Company was awarded the contract for the construction of the 37 kilometre-long Liwang-Jaljala road in the fiscal year 2016/17 with an agreement to complete the project within three years. In the fiscal year 2020, the Division Road Office in Pyuthan had extended the deadline by six months, as the road construction was left incomplete. The extended deadline was over in October last year but the project is nowhere near completion.
“The contractor is yet to complete the road project despite our repeated requests,” said Hemanta Roka, an engineer at the division office. He said the office would take action against the contractor soon.
Jaljala, a religious and a tourist destination in the region, attracts a large number of people from Rolpa and neighbouring districts every year. Visitors to Jaljala have been greatly affected due to the delay in the road project’s completion. The local people are hopeful that the completion of the project will promote tourism in the region.
Man Bahadur Khatri, chairman of the Contractors’ Association of Rolpa who is also the ward chairman of Rolpa Municipality-10, said that the construction of the Liwang-Jaljala road had been delayed, as the main contractor assigned petty contractors to construct the road.
“The road project could not be completed on time because the main contractor hired petty contractors for the construction work. The people’s representatives and the local residents have pressured the contractor time and again to complete the work but to no avail,” said Khatri.
Rautaha/Harihari JV Construction Company, the contractor company, handed over the responsibility of the road construction to three contractors—Dambar Batha, Lal Bahadur Gharti Magar and Tul Bahadur Khadka, according to Hari Raut, a representative of Rautaha/Harihari JV Construction Company.
“Tul Bahadur Khadka was later replaced by Khatak Bahadur Khatri as one of the petty contractors,” Raut said.
Meanwhile, the petty contractors involved in the project claimed that around 80 percent work on the road has already been completed. The dispute between the main contractor and petty contractors has also contributed to the delay in the road project, they say.
“Around 28 kilometres of the road have already been constructed. We could complete all 35 kilometres if the construction company provided us with funds on time as per the agreement. The company is yet to provide us Rs 9.5 million amount,” said Khatak Bahadur Khatri, one of the petty contractors.
Besides complaints about the delay in the project’s completion, the local residents have also started questioning the quality of the road.
“The road has not been constructed as per the project agreement. The authorities concerned should monitor the construction work and take steps accordingly,” said Man Bahadur Khatri, chairman of the Contractors’ Association of Rolpa.
According to Chief District Officer Nabaraj Sapkota, some local residents have filed complaints at the district administration office about the delay in the project’s completion and the inferior quality of the Liwang-Jaljala road.
“We have been requested to check whether the road has been constructed as per the agreement or not. We will soon start monitoring the road project,” said Sapkota.