Stating that quality of works is the essence of the Government’s envisaged road communication development programme, Minister for Public Works, Floriculture and Gardens & Parks, Syed Mohammad Altaf Bukhari today ordered setting up of inspection teams in R&B Department to supervise and make sure that the works being executed by the department conform to the prescribed specifications and standards.
Speaking at a meeting to review the progress of ongoing projects in Public Works sector, the Minister said it will be the responsibility of the inspection teams headed by the officers of the rank of chief engineers, to make sure that upgradation of roads, especially the blacktopping, conforms to the prescribed norms. He said the inspection team would also monitor and regularly check the quality of the material used in such works.
Bukhari said in addition to checking the quality of material at site, there will be regular inspection of works carried out by these teams who in turn will report to his ministry. “I will be myself overseeing that the supervision of works is continuous and effective,” Bukhari announced at the meeting attended by Commissioner Secretary R&B Rohit Kansal, Chief Engineer R&B Kashmir, MD JKPCC and other senior officers of the department.
The Minister directed the officers that in order to ensure quality of upgradation and blacktopping of roads, the inspection teams will be conducting surprise inspection at the sites. “Separate inspection teams will be constituted for both the divisions of the State,” the meeting decided.
Emphasizing on ensuring usage of standard material in the works, Bukhari said there would be no compromise on quality of work. He said the department has huge and important responsibility and asked officers to improve their working to ensure visible change on the ground. He said timely completion of projects and using standard material should be benchmark of the Public Works department.
The Minister said accountability would be made more effective at all the levels of administration so that delinquent officials are dealt with as per the law. “All top officials should in respect of the wings under their control, personally monitor the works on ground and ensure that works are going as per the approved engineering specifications,” he stressed further.
He said it is a matter of concern for him that durability of roads is decreasing which immediately needs to be addressed. The Minister asked the officers to look into this issue from the engineering perspective. He said that construction of drainage facilities alongside roads besides using the right mix will ensure greater durability of the roads.
During the meeting the Minister reiterated his call for setting up of a full-fledged Enforcement Wing in the department to launch immediate and sustained drive against road encroachers. Bukhari said the Enforcement Wing will start functioning immediately and launch a massive drive to remove all illegal structures raised along the highways and other roads in the State.
The Minister gave three weeks to the land grabbers/encroachers to remove all the structures raised by them in violation of Ribbon Development Act on the highway and other roads or otherwise the department will take action by way of demolition of these illegal structures.
“The removal of encroachments will surely facilitate smooth traffic movement on roads and will ease up traffic congestion especially in Srinagar and other major towns of the State,” Bukhari stressed.
The Minister also instructed the officers to launch an anti- encroachment drive on National Highway both old and the new alignment and dismantle all illegal structures without any delay. He asked them to sensitize people through print and electronic media about the repercussions of encroachments. He said that no construction should be allowed on both the sides of expressways and directed the officers to keep close watch on such illegal activities.