RAMKI gives Ring Road construction termination notice to NHAI

Irfan Tramboo

Srinagar, Dec 7: RAMKI, the construction company entrusted with the construction of ambitious Srinagar Ring Road Project, has given termination of contract notice to National Highways Authority of India (NHAI).
Giving out reasons for the termination of the work, which didn’t even start yet, the construction company-RAMKI-has said that the Authority has failed in land acquisition.
The company has stated that it would like to terminate the contract of the Srinagar Ring Road Project with the Authority as it (project) has already faced much delay due to the sluggish pace of land acquisition by the concerned authorities since the project was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in May last year.
Though, the NHAI is in talks with the Construction company as of now, the officials said that if the talks did not yield anything, the tender for the project will have to be rebidded, which is going to delay the project even more in coming days
Public Relations Officer NHAI, Hemraj Bhagat, told Excelsior that the contractor has put out the notice for the termination of the contract with the NHAI and they were looking out for options.
“The contractor has given the termination notice, we are in talks with the contractor, let’s see how it will go,” he said, adding as they could not provide specified land to the contractor. “The project has to be rebidded,” he said.
The work on the similar project took off in Jammu and is on smoothly, the land acquisition has been a main hurdle for the project to start in Srinagar. As per officials of the NHAI, the work on the project cannot be started until 90 per cent land is acquired for the project.
The official said that only 77.3 per cent of land had been acquired to date for Srinagar Ring Road Project and in order to kick-start the work, “we are required to have at least 90 per cent of land acquired for the project.”
“We are negotiating with the contractor, if he comes on board, we can go about it then; if he agrees, well and good, if not, then there is no option but to rebid the project,” he added.
Another official of the NHAI told Excelsior that the project had earlier also faced delay due to the non-acquisition of land as people were not ‘willing’ and after that, the hurdle was the rates of the land that were given to the land owners. “Now if the project is rebidded, it is going witness much more delay,” he said.
As per the officials, for Srinagar Ring Road, 379 kanals of land is to be acquired in Pulwama, 4500 kanals in Budgam, out of which 3661 kanals of land is agricultural in nature, 432 kanals in Srinagar, out of which 202 kanals is agricultural land.
Approximately, 12450 kanals and 14 marlas of land is to be acquired for construction of Semi Ring Roads around Jammu and Srinagar Cities, out of which 10911 kanals and 13 marlas are agricultural land.