JKPCC’s planning for skewed bridge was skewed

SRINAGAR: A Right to Information (RTI) has revealed that how negligently Jammu and Kashmir Project Construction Corporation (JKPCC), a government owned company that is making projects worth Rs 8000 crore in the state, has okayed the controversial Rajbagh skewed bridge. The construction of the train is being planned for the last four decades. None of the higher ups of JKPCC responded to calls from this newspaper.
The JKPCC, which is constructing the bridge for last several years, has allowed its construction without having its designs, revealed an RTI. The company has given the project to a consultant with a free hand.
In response to an RTI application, JKPCC has said that the organisation does not have any designs and the project is being executed by drawings provided by a consultant.
“It is to inform you that the organisation does not have any designs, however the project is being executing (executed) by engaging a consultant who provides drawings and the construction is being executed accordingly by the organisation,” reads the reply to the RTI.
The JKPCC was asked to furnish drawings and designs of the skewed project through an RTI.
An executive engineer of JKPCC on the condition of anonymity told Kashmir Reader that ‘JKPCC has to go through all designs and drawings provided by a consultant before approving the construction of a project.
The skewed bridge was conceived by the state government in 1970’s to help in streamlining and easing out the traffic. However, initially its construction could not take place because it was not believed to ease out the traffic issue. Lately, the J&K government too has changed its position. First it wanted to make it motorable, allowed its construction on this plan and then changed it mid way. Now it wants to use it for foot-bridge only. Over its changing positions Jammu and Kashmir High court has also pulled up the JKPCC. In its latest hearing, it has told the company to be responsible if there arises any issue out of it.
Vice Chairman JKPCC Sheikh Jahangir’s phone was constantly off before this story was sent to print. Its Managing Director Dilip Thusu, Executive Director Nayeem Ahmad did not respond to the repeated calls from this newspaper. Public works minister Naeem Akhtar’s phone was also switched off.