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Two years on, even tender not floated

THAT THE Rs 240 crore Narmada scheme was top on the BJP agenda appeared quite plausible from the fact that barely four days after she took over as chief minister Uma Bharti cleared the project in the first Cabinet meeting on December 12, 2003. But the alacrity was a delusion as the subsequent lethargy over the project revealed. It took the State Government one-and-a-half years to lay the foundation stone for the project on April 29, 2005.

india Updated: Jan 30, 2006 11:54 IST
Anil Dubey

THAT THE Rs 240 crore Narmada scheme was top on the BJP agenda appeared quite plausible from the fact that barely four days after she took over as chief minister Uma Bharti cleared the project in the first Cabinet meeting on December 12, 2003.

But the alacrity was a delusion as the subsequent lethargy over the project revealed. It took the State Government one-and-a-half years to lay the foundation stone for the project on April 29, 2005.

Two years down the line, the State Government is still undecided about the mode of floating tender, forget its implementation. The pace of the work gives lies to the State Government’s claim of completing the project in three years.

Though the tender documents of the scheme have been prepared, acquisition of forestland of Ratapani Sanctuary and clearance of National Highway, the two major hurdles, have yet to be cleared.
Besides, the high-level committee has not approved the documents before floating tenders. Thus, more delay in the project is feared.

Sources said that preparation of tender documents has got delayed due to fresh directives about the process. Earlier, officials had prepared tender documents in five groups. Now it is learnt hat the documents are being prepared in one group so that only big companies could get the work.

According to officials, getting clearance for the Ratapani Sanctuary land could prove to be the biggest hurdle. A committee
of Supreme Court issues this permission. Besides, the pipeline is to pass by the side of National Highway from Obeidullaganj. So, permission of NH authorities is also needed.

“We are involved in a futile exercise of getting no-objection certificates. I hope that implementation would be quicker once the work is awarded to any company,” said an official involved in this work.

First Published: Jan 30, 2006 11:54 IST