On deplorable condition of NH-53; BRO/BRTF alleged fund misused
Source: Hueiyen News Service

Imphal, July 28 2010: Amid the protests and supports to the government decision to take over the charge of maintenance of NH-53 from the BRTF, a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed in the Gauhati High Court by two individuals has charged that a huge funds in the maintenance of the highway was not used in proper way and prayed the court for a directive to investigate the matter by a competent investigative agency like the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) .

Admitting a PIL filed by two social workers, H Kullamani and M Tomba, the Gauhati High Court, Imphal Bench today served show cause notice to the authorities of the Union Ministry of Transport and BRTF returnable within four weeks from the date of issue of the notice.

The two individuals filed the case against the secretary of the Union ministry of transport, Chairman and Secretary of the National Highway Authority, commandant of 765 BRTF, CO of the 89 APO commander/E Civil BRTF, headquarter, Project Puspak, CO 99 APO BRTF/BRO, SP of CBI Imphal, DG of CBI, New Delhi and state Chief Secretary.

The hearing of the case was conducted today in the court of division bench of the Gauhati High Court comprising judges, Justice Mutum Binoykumar and Justice AC Upadhya.

In the petition, it was alleged that even though huge funds were released for the maintenance of the NH-53 under five year plan of the Central government for keeping the highway in good condition and all season accessible one, the road condition is in woeful state.

The present condition of the road showed that the huge funds invested for the improvement works have been misappropriated and the funds were not utilized properly in making the highway an accessible one.

The deplorable state of condition of the highway is the clear example of failure to implement the works properly and the funds have been misappropriated, they charged.

They also prayed the court to direct the CBI to register a FIR case against the authority of the BRTF and BRO and investigate into the alleged misappropriation of fund and award punishments to the erring officials.

In the PIL, the petitioners also prayed the court to take the matter seriously as various sections of the society including the truckers and transporters prefer to take route considering outnumber problems facing by the highway travelers and drivers of the vehicle on the NH-39 .

Among other heavy extortion demands and frequent looting on the stretch of the NH-39 compelled the drivers to choose the NH-53 but when they started plying the road, the authorities maintaining the road could not make the road accessible.

As a result of it, people are facing utmost problem in going outside the state and in regular flow of essential commodities, they lamented.

Like the NH-39, the NH-53 should also be keep in good condition so that truckers can procure essential commodities, they prayed the court urging direct the authorities concern to provide all facilities which could availed by the state under the National Highway Act by keeping it upto the standard of being a national highway.