Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong has expressed doubt if the much hyped 95 kilometers Shillong-Dawki Road project will be completed within the stipulated period of time.
“Very doubtful as in Meghalaya, the working season is hardly for six or seven months and then monsoon continues for the next four-five months. During monsoons no labourers or workers can be at site due to the quantum of rainfall,” said Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong.
“Of course from the state government side we are pursuing this. I told my secretary PWD, my chief engineer (NH) to follow it up and make sure the work is completed at the earliest possible,” he said.
The estimated time frame for the completion of the project is 2024.
He, however, asserted that the National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation (NHIDCL) will continue with the construction of the 95 kilometers Shillong-Dawki road project amid the early onset of monsoon.
“We have already instructed the NHIDCL to continue the work as we would like to see that this project is completed at the earliest possible. Therefore, wherever possible to work wherever the portion which is feasible for working even during rainy season they can do so but they need to be cautious so that unwanted incidents should be avoided in totality,” Tynsong told reporters.
In view of the incessant rain that is lashing the state causing landslides and uprooting of trees, the deputy chief minister said that engineers, contractors and workers have been directed to maintain strict vigil in case of any such eventualities.
The deputy chief minister also informed that vehicles on Friday were also stranded due to a landslide that took place at Rngain along the Shillong-Dawki road and within two hours, the engineers, SDO along with the contractors immediately cleared the road.
“We have instructed the NHIDCL to be proactive, always their engineers should be at site in case there is any landslide at least we should clear it at the shortest possible time,” he said.
Stating that the question of stopping the work does not arise, Tynsong said, “If we stop now also the portion where they have already started the extraction or digging the hillock means a landslide will happen whether you stop the work or you don’t stop the work. When heavy rainfall takes place it means it is bound to happen.”
On the flood occurring along the Shillong-Guwahati road, the deputy CM said that the government is in touch with the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) which has been entrusted with the task to maintain the road.
“Quite a number of time this issue was raised by Nongpoh MLA about the flood and water clogging happening somewhere in Nongpoh and now in fact it has reduced a lot as they have already completed a few stretch of culvert where they divert the flow of water to the place identified and dedicated,” he informed.