If you blame the authorities every time a new road crumbles after a small downpour, you are not alone. Giving you company is the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) that, in its latest report, has criticised the Municipal Corporation of Delhi for blatantly ignoring the upkeep of roads.
The auditing body said that a performance check of all MCD road projects revealed that the civic agency did not implement the schemes properly. At places where it managed to build roads, it did not improve drainage facilities. The result: the roads cracked earlier than their projected life span.
The MCD also does not seem to be bothered with quality and conducted checks only in only 53 per cent of its projects, it said.
“MCD accepted the substandard work during the monsoon season although the CRRI had thrown up defects in most of the works. The works were neither rectified by the contractor, nor were compensations recovered,” said the report. Of a total road network of 30,093 km, MCD is responsible for 27,139 km.
The CAG said the MCD also dragged its feet while allocating works and took at least three to 12 months to award 83 road projects while the prices escalated by Rs 12.06 crore. But when it came to making payments to contractors who were unable to complete the works in time, the MCD was very prompt. It managed to make up to 87 per cent payments for projects that were still incomplete.