Deficient Development

February 27, 2017 0 Comments EDITORIAL 166 Views
Deficient Development

Jammu and Kashmir has many interesting tales to tell on political, social and economic lines. There is a complete disparity as far as the fund allocation to the two regions is concerned. While Jammu gets the major share, Kashmir runs dry with each passing day. There may not be any dearth of funds as far as developmental works with the Government, but the slow pace of work has meant that some of the mega projects remain incomplete even after failing several deadlines. If you compare the developmental graph of Jammu with that of Kashmir, one would find a clear disparity. Sometime it’s from the Government and most of the time it occurs from the uncertain political happenings in the valley. The Rambagh-Jahangir Chowk Flyover in Srinagar is a case in point. After spending crores of rupees, the flyover is still incomplete though the construction work has been going on for past many years. Forget the big projects; the authorities fail to keep deadlines even on routine developmental works. We often hear ministers reviewing progress of various projects, but we rarely see any project completed in time. People have become used to the laidback approach of government agencies executing the civil works. Besides, lack of coordination between the different departments results in sheer wastage of funds. Roadsides are dug out to lay telephone lines, only to be dug out again by the water works department to repair a malfunctioning pipe. Besides resulting in unnecessary additional expenditure, it also poses serious hardships for the residents. The state also incurs huge losses on account of the sub-standard material used by the contractors. It is one of the reasons why the macadamized road surfaces do not sustain for long. In the absence of strict monitoring, the contractors do not bother to conform to the guidelines. The roads develop cracks and slowly wear off into loose gravel after rain or snowfall, which eventually result in potholes. The government keeps stressing on speeding up the pace of works and in the process compromise on the quality. The government must be strict in enforcing accountability in various civil works so as to ensure timely completion as well as quality and sustainable work. Ideally the state capital should fare better in terms of the development projects, but the situation in Srinagar is as bad as any rural area. Besides being a capital city, Srinagar is also a famed tourist destination and accordingly special care should have been taken to its developmental needs, but that is not the case. One may consider the volatile law and order situation in the valley as one of the reasons for the incomplete projects, but then the government has not also taken any compensatory measure to make up for the lost time. More the delay, more the expenditure. If the government can prevent the loses on account of the delay or sub-standard work, it can save substantial sum for other development purposes.

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