NH-02 Kohima-Mao project: Less than 7% progress in 2 months
KOHIMA — The Gauhati High Court, Kohima Bench, on Wednesday observed that it will be difficult to complete the construction of National Highway- 02, between Kohima and Mao, by May 31, 2024, the new extended deadline, citing less than 7% work progress over the last two months.
Hearing a PIL (Suo moto) on the matter on Wednesday, a two-judge bench of Justice Nelson Sailo and Justice Budi Habung noted that the work progress achieved on the stretch of road was 51.54% as of November 29, 2023, before marginally increasing to 57.63% by February 6, 2024.
Considering the slow work progress during this period, it appears that it will be difficult for the entire work to be completed during the extended period, the court observed.
Joshua Sheqi, counsel for the contractor submitted to the court that 57.63% of the work has been done as of Feb. 6, 2024. He also informed the court that the deadline for completion of the work has been extended to May 31, 2024, while adding that it is possible to complete the work within the timeline after changing the scope.
He further told the court that two out of five stages of work are 100% complete.
For the work to progress at a faster pace, the court directed the counsel for the contractor and authority engineer to file an affidavit containing the work progress before the next hearing on March 13.
The affidavit should include work programme of the contractor and show as to how the contractor plans to carry out the work within the extended period, that is, till May 31, it added.
It may be mentioned that the original alignment for the road stretch was for widening of the two-lane road with paved shoulders but the NHIDCL had ‘descoped’ it to up-grading the existing road, nullifying the earlier scope of the right of way.
The contractor, M/s Fortune Group, had in October last year told this newspaper that the final blacktopping and road markings would be carried out between January and March 2024.