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Minister blames opponents, people for delays in works

Panjim: Blaming political opponents and people for creating hurdles in the way of development works, Public Works Department Minister Ramakrishna (Sudin) Dhavalikar on Tuesday announced that the State will not go ahead with the projects, where the objections are raised by the people.”

The Minister named the ‘Western Bypass’ as one of the projects that has been delayed by over two years, where the State has been finding difficulties to move on due to political opposition.

Dhavalikar was reacting to the unhappiness expressed by Union Road Transport and Highways (MORTH) Minister Nitin Gadkari over the progress of ongoing work in the State. “Unhappiness expressed by Nitin Gadkari is absolutely correct. But this unhappiness is not because of our officers or engineers or principal chief engineers,” the Minister said.

“It is only because of some local politicians who are involved in the alignment of land, especially in case of western bypass project. These politicians are from both sides – ruling as well as opposition. The western bypass project has been delayed by two years now,” Dhavalikar stated.

He, however, refused to name anyone and added, “The people are objecting unnecessarily without having much knowledge of the work. One should realise that development of Goa has to be completed as early as possible as this is the package we got during the NDA government with the help of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Nitin Gadkari.”

Dhavalikar also blamed the media for helping those creating a hindrance in the way of development. He urged political friends and the people not to object to the work but to work together with the government in resolving the issues and going ahead.

At the review meeting chaired by Gadkari, it has been resolved that if any politician objects to a project, the State will not go ahead with that portion of the work.

“In the meeting, we have resolved that if any politician is objecting, we will not go ahead with the work. The work of only non-objectionable part will be completed and handed over to MHAI. Tomorrow, no one should complain,” the Minister stated.

PWD identifies 80 Portuguese-era bridges in dilapidated condition

PWD has identified nearly 80 Portuguese-era bridges that are in a dilapidated condition and need to be reconstructed immediately. Following the collapse of a footbridge at Sanvordem that killed two people last year, the government had initiated an audit of all Portuguese-era bridges in the State.

“We have identified 80 bridges, most of which are small culverts, which are in a dilapidated condition. These bridges are more than 30-year-old, and all will be taken up for reconstruction,” Dhavalikar said. He said that all the bridges identified are in North Goa while the audit in South Goa is yet to be taken up. “It will take one more year to complete audit of all the bridges,” he said. [H]

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