NEW DELHI: Taking a dig at “some" non-performing officers and those who are not ready to change,
Nitin Gadkari said now a committee of experts from the private and government sector will be appointed to recommend norms for designs, quality of work and to promote new technologies in highway and bridge construction. “Mein in logon se haar gaya hoon (I have given up to such people) and now I don’t waste much time,” the minister said at an event.
He also lashed out at the consultants preparing detailed project reports (DPRs) for not doing the due diligence and said they are responsible for delay in execution of projects and also for highways lacking adequate provisions for safety of all road users. “Now we have decided that any DPR prepared by a consultant will be placed before the panel for its approval only after the regional officer concerned has validated it by visiting the sites,” Gadkari said.
National Highways Authority of India
(NHAI) chairman K K Sandhu also raised concerns over poor quality of DPRs in some cases while addressing a webinar organised by the Consulting Engineers Association of India (CEAI) on Friday. He said NHAI’s experience with consulting engineers has been “mixed”. He said Some projects which needed to be completed in 2-4 years are languishing for decades.
Sandhu also said some of the financial quotes received by NHAI for various projects from such consultants are so low that one wonders if the consultants have included the salary of the employees and good work.
While consultants and non or poor performance of “few” officers have been on Gadkari’s radar, the minister also lauded works of most of the engineers who have helped his ministry and NHAI achieve record construction this year. “Most of the officers and engineers are good and their good work has earned us the fame. The credit goes to them. We are building the Delhi-Mumbai expressway at a faster pace and we saved Rs 5,000 crore in the Zojila tunnel project. Most of our people are good performers.