Though the solid waste management plant here had a grand opening by chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda on November 18 last year, the project remains a non-starter.
As the Karnal municipal corporation (MC) has started dumping city's garbage at Shekhpura Suhana, about 15 km from the district headquarters, the place has become a nuisance for residents of nearby villages.
Inquiries made by HT have shown that the chief minister's office (CMO) was persuaded to get the plant inaugurated by Hooda, though it was not completed.
Sources in the administration said that in the past 10 months, the plant ran for less than a month, and that too at less than its full capacity.
Owing to its non-completion, the plant has not been operational for the past month, they added.
Mumbai-based private firm Hydroair Tectonics Limited (HTL), which was given the contract to run the project on build-operate-transfer basis, was made to start working though the project was not completed and handed over to it by the MC.
In the absence of a completion certificate, the plant had not been given any mandatory clearances, including environment clearance, licences for factory (for manufacture of manure from organic waste), labour and water connection.
Deputy commissioner Vikas Yadav confirmed to HT on Wednesday that several civil and mechanical works at the plant site were still incomplete.
"The state government has released an additional sum of `2.50 crore, and we hope that the plant will be fully functional by December this year," he said.
Since its foundation stone was laid by Hooda in August 2008, the project has been witnessing hurdles. While it was earlier slated to be functional by June 2010, the plant remains non-functional 10 months after its official inauguration.
Under the Jawahar Lal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNURM), the Centre had funded 80% of the project while rest was borne by the state government.
The infrastructure was conceptualised by the National Building Construction Corporation (NBCC), a central government agency, and HTL will run the project for three years before handing over it to the MC.
"After getting a completion certificate from the NBCC, the MC will hand over the project to Hydroair Tectonics Limited for operations. As the state government did not forward funds, the project has been delayed," said Sohan Lal, deputy manager of NBCC.
HTL managing director RK Singh said it was unfair to blame the firm for the delay.
"Without funds, we cannot complete the pending works. NBCC is delaying pending payment and once it is done, we will make it fully functional very soon," she said.