Expedite PMDP projects in Leh

How can development take place when seriousness in respect of time frame is found wanting in execution of most of the projects under Prime Minister’s Development Package (PMDP) in Jammu and Kashmir State , particularly in areas like Leh in Ladakh region? As the very name of the scheme suggests, the projects under the Package are primarily aimed at bringing about infrastructural development to boost economic activities. The package of Rs.80,068 crores  for Jammu and Kashmir had been announced by the Prime Minister himself during his visit to the State in November 2015.  Progress on the projects sanctioned under the package is regularly monitored by the Central Government as also by some senior functionaries of the State Government periodically.
Appraising about the fate and the current status of the projects under the package in all the three regions of the State, the position is far below the expectations. For example,  it is surprising to note that in three years time, only one project has been completed in Leh and expected momentum in work execution is yet to pick up  for reasons not known. Seven other vital projects are still pending. Floods , it may be recalled , had wrought extensive damage, to repair which and to ensure better connectivity, projects under the PMDP had to be completed within specified time frame but ground situation suggests that the work was going on exactly at snail’s pace.
It is found that seven out of total eight projects with an estimated cost of Rs.15 crore are in the pipeline. The pretext or the common excuse of funds availability is in the instant case not put forth as funds have already been released and have been kept at the disposal of the concerned authorities. How can it be accounted for, that a paltry amount of Rs.540 lac only has  been spent from out of available funds of Rs. 15 crore ? What ails where is not hard to comprehend . Steel bridge over Zanskar River is in doldrums. Likewise, 40 meter span foot bridge over the same river at Wari Dho as also 25 metres suspension bridge over Zanaskar river at Nyerak continue to be only on papers . Funds, on the other hand stand already released.
Other constructions like a bridge over River Indus at Baldais continue to remain as it is and nothing beyond erecting of a superstructure though, again funds have been released. Construction of a double storied rest house building at Bema too is not complete. Flood protection work which should have received preferred attention from the authorities continues to be mired in their casual approach and ineffective monitoring.
There can be no justification for the administrative machinery in not attending to sensitive projects meant for erecting of the required infrastructure which would help in flood protection and help in widely mitigating the after effects of floods, if any. Non availability of funds, we reiterate, can be the biggest impediment in the flow, rhyme and quality of the work besides straining the time frame but when funds are almost released in advance and the work still remains in arrears of unacceptable levels; accountability and responsibility can be questioned. Besides, some via media has to be found out to deal with the problem of non response to tenders floated for project works. Prudence warranted that the State administration made the best use of the Prime Minister’s Development Package in time bound manner, all in the interests of the people for whom the package was announced by the Prime Minister.