The much-awaited signal free western expressway, which is expected to relieve Delhi of heavy traffic congestion at night, is going to miss its deadline.
The expressway was to be made operational before the Commonwealth Games in October, this year.
In its report before Supreme Court’s special forest bench, headed by Chief Justice K.G. Balakrishnan, the court appointed monitoring committee said the Kundli-Manesar-Palwal expressway has missed its deadline of July 29, 2009.
The committee said the ongoing acquisition proceedings pending before the Punjab and Haryana High Court has led to the delay. Several petitions challenging land acquisition for the project on NH-1, NH-2 and Gurgaon-Pataudi road are yet to be decided.
“The concessionaire has achieved physical progress of about 32.20 per cent up to November 30, 2009, against the original revised target of 100 per cent on July 29, 2009,” read the committee's status report.
The report raised concern over the slow progress in the construction vis-à-vis the financial expenditure on the project.
“The deadline for the project has now been revised. As per the new plan 52.6 per cent of the work would be completed on December 31, 2010,” said advocate Wasim A. Qadri through whom the committee's report was filed.
The major constraint in the progress is the high court order that has stayed the possession of land to the concessionaire, constructing the expressway.
In wake of the slow progress, the monitoring committee has directed the concessionaire to submit its monthly targets.
The progress would be reviewed on weekly basis.
The monitoring committee has asked the Haryana government’s chief secretary to impress upon the concessionaire to achieve its targets well in time. Meanwhile, land has been acquired for the 100 metre corridor for the eastern expressway.
Compensation amount for the acquired land in Sonepat, Faridabad, Baghpat, Ghaziabad and Gautam Budh Nagar has already been released in the joint account of the competent authorities.
Some land owners have disputed the compensation award through arbitration petitions.