Speed up works on Bantwal-Bengaluru National Highway 275: MP urges Centre
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Speed up works on Bantwal-Bengaluru National Highway 275: MP urges Centre

June 11, 2020

Mysore/Mysuru: Mysuru-Kodagu MP Pratap Simha has urged the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) to expedite the two road works on Bantwal-Bengaluru National Highway 275 that passes through Mysuru and Kodagu.

The MP has apprised I.K. Pandey, Director General (Road Development) and Special Secretary to Government of India (Ministry of Road Transport and Highways) that the two works have been initiated on the stretch without calling tenders as the works have to be completed before the arrival of monsoon, particularly in Kodagu.

Meeting Pandey at his office yesterday, Pratap Simha urged him to allow the works to continue and the status quo maintained with regard to strengthening of road from 93.200 km to 132.34 km of NH-275, Bantwal-Bengaluru section with an estimated cost of Rs. 24.73 crore and construction of retaining wall, RCC drains and road safety works in Sampaje Ghat section (Western Ghats) in selected reaches from 71.60 km to 110.00 km of NH-275 with an estimated cost of Rs. 47.27 crore.

In the beginning of this year, tenders were invited for 2 works excluding GST as per the direction from the Ministry. The works have been already processed and are at stage of work allocation. These works are of very urgent nature and to be taken up immediately, especially the works on Sampaje Ghat Section. “This section receives heavy rain every year and in the last two years this section received heavy rain resulting in heavy damages. As a result, the road was closed during monsoon,” Simha has told Pandey.

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As there are every possibilities of receiving heavy rain and landslips this year too, road improvements on this section has to be taken-up immediately before monsoon, failing which the NHAI would face severe problem for maintenance of these roads and also cause difficulties to the commuters, Simha has stated.

Re-inviting tenders for the works will consume minimum of 120 days and by the time of awarding the work, monsoon will be vigorous. Hence it may not be possible to achieve progress till the end of this year. Also, the delay in implementing these projects may result in further damages to the existing Highways due to monsoon and the Department may be forced to close the Sampaje Ghat section for traffic, inconveniencing the commuters, Simha told Pandey.

Also, for the two works, the bids received are below the sanctioned estimated rate, which is advantageous to the Government. In case of re-tendering, if tenders are received with a premium, there are possibilities of audit objection due to extra financial implication. And there are chances of the lowest bidders approaching the Court. This may hamper further processing of these works, the MP stated and has urged Pandey to expedite the road works to save costs and also benefit the commuters. 

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