General Reserve Engineering Force (GREF) responsible for the construction of 200 KM Batote-Doda-Kishtwar-Sinthan road was caught by Senior Congress Leader and MLA Inderwal, Ghulam Mohammad Saroori today while using substandard material in construction work on Thathri-Kishtwar road in Kishtwar district.
Saroori who was on tour of his Inderwal constituency was accompanied by Assistant Commissioner Labour Kishtwar, Zakir Hussain and other senior officials were also present when Saroori caught the GREF red handed.
“GREF had been assigned the job of construction of nearly 200 KM vulnerable road from Batote to Kishtwar-Sinthan top which witnessed massive accidents— but instead of doing his good job, GREF is using substandard material in the form of sand mixed with mud and low ratio of cement in construction” said Saroori who had vast experience of construction as a contractor and former Roads and Building Minister after he (Saroori) caught GREF red handed while using sub standard material in construction work.
Saroori said that after witnessing the use of sand and mud in construction work from Kishtwar to Thathri, he was shocked that GREF contractors not only use the substandard material in construction work, but also use the same material in construction of drains and protection walls threatening the safety of passengers who traveled on this National Highway. He said that GREF contractors are digging two meter deep drain and is covered with hardly 2 inch concrete cover, mixture of stone crusher stand with lighter weight iron rods.
“It was due to use of substandard material in construction of breast walls, R-walls and protection walls, every year Kishtwar district remains cut off from other parts of the state due to erosion of roads caused due to use of sub standard material” Saroori said.
He also picked up some samples of substandard material used by the GREF in construction of breast wall, R-walls and drains on the road in front of the general public and handed over the same to district administration for analysis. He said that it is the duty of district administration Kishtwar to analyze the handover material and initiate action against the concerned agency.
Due to the bad road condition from Thathri to Kishtwar, it becomes difficult for the drivers to ply their vehicle on this road as the road portion between Thathri to Kishtwar is slippery. He also blames the GREF for Drabshallah accident and added that despite repeated directions from government and house committees, the GREF fails to erect crash barriers and parapets on vulnerable stretch of National Highway including at Drabshallah accident site.
“In fact the Government must constitute an inquiry committee to probe the embezzlements in GREF which is present in the form of substandard work executed by the GREF in the construction of Batote-Doda-Kishtwar National Highway,” Saroori demanded.
Saroori also appealed to the Chief Minister J&K and National Highway authorities of India to initiate a thorough probe into the use of sub standard material into the construction work of road from Thathri to Kishtwar as earlier as possible so as to prevent many tragic accidents from occurrence in future.