Major setback to plans of decongesting Jammu city
Sites identified at Panjtirthi, Peer Kho turn out ‘unfeasible’
JAMMU, Apr 21: In a major setback to the plans of decongesting winter capital, the Government has failed to start work on two multi-level parking complexes under Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT) Mission of the Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs. This is mainly because the sites were identified by the concerned authorities in most haphazard and unplanned manner.
The most shocking aspect is that even after the lapse of nearly two years nobody in the State administration is in a position to specify as to when the work will actually begin on these two projects of much importance for Jammu city.
The foundation stones of multi-level car parking facilities at Panjtirthi and Peer Kho to be constructed under AMRUT Mission were laid by the then Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on July 9, 2017 and directions were issued to the concerned authorities on the occasion that the facilities should come up within a period of two years.
Thereafter, the Jammu Municipal Corporation (JMC) floated tenders for construction of parking complexes at these two places. After long drawn exercise, the Notice Inviting Tender in respect of Panjtirthi reached the logical conclusion with M/s A K Constructions emerging as successful bidder while as tendering process in respect of parking facility at Peer Kho could not be completed successfully.
Accordingly, the work was formally allotted to M/s A K Constructions for completion within a period of 24 months at a cost of Rs 27.32 crore. However, during the course of soil testing it came to the fore that site at Panjtirthi was actually a landfill spot several years back as such it is not feasible to construct such a huge complex there, official sources told EXCELSIOR.
Since the cost of treatment of soil and construction of foundation was enormously high the company refused to start the work till the Government meets its conditions particularly those relating to the cost of the project, sources said, adding “due to this the fate of the project is hanging in balance but Government has not initiated any exercise to either identify the alternate site or meet the conditions put forth by the company”.
“We can’t specify as to when the work on the project will actually start as final decision is required to be taken at the highest level in the Government”, said an officer of the Jammu Municipal Corporation while wishing anonymity, adding “it seems that the site was identified in most haphazard manner”.
About the parking facility at Peer Kho, the officer said, “tenders were floated a number of times since the laying of foundation stone by the then Chief Minister but we are not receiving any positive response”, adding “it seems that the site for multi-tier parking complex at Peer Kho is also not feasible in the opinion of contractors that’s why they are not showing any interest in the project”.
“There is no headway on both the projects despite the fact that Governor, while reviewing implementation of important projects in Jammu in a meeting at Civil Secretariat on August 20, 2018, had stressed on removing bottlenecks in a time bound manner”, sources said, adding “the direction in this regard was issued by the Governor after the concerned authorities conveyed him that these two projects were being re-worked due to some feasibility issues”.
They further said, “the shocking aspect is that while Jammu Municipal Corporation authorities were grappling with the feasibility issues the politicians and the senior bureaucrats kept on befooling the people by issuing one after another statement that both these projects will come in shortest possible time”.
It is pertinent to mention here that both these complexes were planned to provide parking facility to around 300 cars and other small size vehicles. “The failure on the part of the Government to start work on these two parking complexes is a major setback to the plans of decongesting Jammu city”, sources said.