To begin with, the ministry has appointed six independent experts to examine various parts of the flagship Char Dham road project Uttarakhand, Officials said the system would be institutionalized for the highway sector to ensure that road projects conform to the quality standards set by the government.
As per the order of the ministry, experts have been tasked to review the official structure of the Authority Engineers, including the capacity of technical persons deployed for the projects. Authority or independent engineers have a major role to play in ensuring that the quality of work and safety features required in a project are not compromised. The payments to the contractors are released by the road owning agencies only after the bills are cleared by the authority engineers. Recently, there have been some cases of damage to newly constructed highways due to rain in different parts of the country. Last week, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari Raised concern over the quality of work on NH. Considering the standards set for such roads and high investment, National Highways are expected to be of higher quality and with better facilities.
‘Terms of Reference’ issued by Ministry for Char Dham The road project says that experts will assess the quality of works and services to be provided by the contractors; Identifying bottlenecks in ongoing projects; and suggest ways to complete it on time. As the project road passes through hills, experts have been asked to examine the project report. and see if adequate provisions have been made. “They will also conduct road safety audits including design, construction and maintenance of guidelines such as barricading, signage, marking and night visibility. Responsibility will be fixed for any poor quality work,” said an official.