Aizawl (zoramobserver.com): Deciding to go ahead with the proposed statewide bandh on Thursday to protest bad roads across Mizoram, main opposition the Mizo National Front (MNF) alleged that the reason behind bad roads in the state is due to “gross corruption.”
Speaking to reporters at a press conference here today, MNF senior vice president and MNF Action Committee Chairman Tawnluia alleged that the ruling Congress government was hand in glove with non-tribal contractors who were awarded major contracts for construction of roads in Mizoram.
“The Congress government gave undue favour to non-tribal contractors by ignoring Mizo contractors. As the government was keen on making money out of road and that it was hand in glove with non-tribal contractors, it failed to maintain quality control and monitor the construction work which is the reason for bad roads across the state,” he alleged.
Accusing the ruling government of not paying sincere attention towards repairing roads, Tawnluia said private resolutions to repair and reconstruct roads and bridges across that state moved by opposition legislators in the state assembly were sternly rejected by ruling legislators under the pretext that no road and bridge across the state are under poor condition.
According to Tawnluia, the 2 lanning NH-54 between Kawnpui and Buichali which was completed in 2015 has become non-travelable two years after its completion due to sub-standard. The original estimate of the road was Rs. 12,413 lakh which was increased to Rs. 17,198 lakh after revised estimate. The contract was awarded to a Silchar based M/S ABCI Infrastructure Pvt Ltd which commenced the construction work on 13 July, 2009. Initially the construction was scheduled to be completed by 2011. However, as the contractors failed to complete within a stipulated time, the construction was extended for 7 times and finally it was completed on 1 November, 2015. “The road however, became under poor condition and is not travelable two years after its completion due to sub-standard,” he said.
Tawnluia further slammed Congress government for failing to complete a 90 km long Serkhan to Bhaga road (NH-306A).
He said that the government floated tender in 2011 as per which the construction of road was scheduled to be completed by 2013. Rs. 7,163 lakh contract worth was awarded to M/S ABCI and another contract worth Rs. 1,526 lakh was awarded to GP projects for construction of Serkhan to Bhaga road. However, the construction of road has not been completed even 5 years after floating the tender, Tawnluia said.
He said that all roads across the state are under poor condition and many of them became non-travelable as a result of which people faced enormous hardships.
It was against this backdrop of bad roads across the state that the opposition decided to stage statewide total shutdown on 14 September (Thursday) as a token of showing solidarity to people who faced hardships due to bad roads, Tawnluia said.
He said that a 12 hour bandh would be observed across the state on Thursday from 5 am to 5 pm to draw the attention of the government.
The bandh, however, shall not cover media, milkman, medical duty, fire duty, law and order duty and other emergency duty, he said.