7 years on, Noorbagh-Qamarwari bridge still incomplete

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Signifying lackadaisical attitude of the authorities, Noorbagh-Qamarwari bridge which was scheduled for completed in four years, is yet to be completed despite missing of many deadlines. 
Work on the bridge started in 2011.  The project was initially scheduled to be completed in just four years. Inordinate delay in completion of this project has raised questions over the performance of authorities to executed developmental projects.  
The project is being executed by Roads and Buildings department Kashmir. Shabir Ahmad, a local said that work on the project was started in 2011 and authorities had assured that it would be completed within four years. 
 “In Kashmir, authorities seem to be least bothered about deadlines. Do we have any example in Srinagar where any of the projects was complete within stipulated time? I don’t think so. This project (Noorbagh-Qamarwari Bridge) is one of the examples of failure to meet deadlines,” said Mushtaq Ahmad, a local.
Locals alleged that work on this bridge is going on at snail’s pace and they fear further delay in its completion.
The ongoing project has already missed several deadlines. Initially, it was scheduled to be completed in 2014. Later, the deadline was extended upto March 2017 and then upto December 2017 but only to miss it again. The latest deadline has been set as December 2018.
“It has become a routine for some authorities to initiate a project, construct some pillars or plinth and then leave it half¬way,” they said.
The locals urged Governor NN Vohra to direct concerned authorities to ensure completion of the bridge before the deadline.
“We appeal Governor NN Vohra to direct concerned officials to expedite the work and complete the project without any further delay. In fact, explanation must be sought from the officials as why they failed to meet earlier deadlines,” said Bilal Ahmad, a local.
Executive engineer R&B’s construction division first Showkat Ahmad said that there were various factors which delayed the completion of project. 
“Devastating floods in 2014 and uprising in 2016 delayed the project. Another factor for the delay of the work is that funds worth Rs 5.50 crore are yet to be released. Around seventy percent work has been completed on this project and the work is presently going on with good pace,” he said
He said that work on the project will be expedited once funds are released, and will be completed by December 2018.

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