Devp works in Ludhiana hit amid restrictions on mining in Punjab
At a time when development works have already taken a hit due to paucity of funds available with municipal corporation (MC), restrictions imposed on mining activities in the state and hiked prices of raw material has further aggravated the problem
At a time when development works have already taken a hit due to paucity of funds available with municipal corporation (MC), restrictions imposed on mining activities in the state and hiked prices of raw material has further aggravated the problem.
Even as councillors are expecting large-scale development works ahead of the upcoming municipal elections, contractors who have been allotted projects by MC rued that there is an acute shortage of raw material in the market and even if it is arranged from Anandpur Sahib or Himachal, prices have been doubled by suppliers.
President of the Municipal Corporation Contractors Association, Tavinder Singh, said that they source gravel mainly from Pathankot, Anandpur Sahib or Himachal. “Mining activities in Pathankot have been stopped completely and it has also been affected adversely in the Anandpur Sahib area due to restrictions imposed by the government. Gravel which was earlier available at around ₹25-30 per feet, now costs ₹55-60 per feet.”
“Contractors are struggling to take up development works, even as councillors are pressuring MC to take up more projects, which will be difficult if the government fails to resolve issues related to mining in the state. We have also taken up the matter with civic body officials,” said Singh.
An MC official, requesting anonymity, said that contractors have highlighted the issue with MC and also spoken to the higher authorities. “Not only MC, work has also been affected in other departments including public works department (PWD),” said the official.
MC additional commissioner Aaditya Dachalwal said MC is not concerned with the contractors problems. “These issues have been reported in the past too. They will have to complete the projects availed by them through the tendering process. Directions have been issued to the staff to get the works completed,” said Dachalwal.
Opposition slams MC
Slamming the civic body, district president of Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) and councillor Harbhajan Singh Dang stated that the MC has even failed to complete the projects which have already been allotted.
“Five road projects and installation of interlocking tiles are pending in my ward alone and works have been affected at large across the city,” said Dang.