Work on Lowry Tunnel Approach Road stopped due to lack of funds. The construction company set up all its missionaries

CHITRAL, (MANEND NEWS):  Lowari Tunnel which has great  importancece for people of Chitral. This tunnel has been completed 80% in 26 years but 20% work is still left. Concrete, retaining walls, culverts, etc. Work was continue  on the road from the northern  portal  of the tunnel to Bradham, which was closed due to lack of funds. The 7.3 km road ahead of the tunnel included 26 culverts  and bridges in 1.6 km with fill, concrete and protective walls. For this purpose, the National Highway Authority had released a fund of Rs 2.2 billion in 2017 and the work was to be completed in two years. However, due to some technical weaknesses and departmental negligence, the work was delayed and started in October 2017. This includes complaints from locals who had to pay for the land. In 2018, the government changed and the PTI government came to power at the  federation. About 65% of the work on the approach road had been completed and 35% of the work was still to be done when PC-1 expired and the present government withheld its funds. 

About Rs. 800 million  is required to complete this work. According to reports, the work on the 1.6 km bridge was not included in the PC-1 project. It was an additional work. PC One of Lawari tunnel which was Rs 26 billion was revised and increased to Rs 42 billion. If this work had been completed on time, the work of Lawari tunnel could have been completed at Rs 24 billion but unfortunately due to negligence of departments, contractors Money laundering is always an obstacle to development projects. There is still work to be done inside the Lawari Tunnel for which an additional Rs. 16 billion is required which will complete the work of this tunnel. But on the one hand the government is facing financial loss due to delays in work because the prices of material and  things is increasing and on the other hand the people are also facing difficulties  due big ditches in the middle of this road.. 

In this regard, our correspondent  visited  Lawari Tunnel to inspect the work and talked to the people and also contacted the concerned contractor who confirmed that the work was stopped due to lack of funds and all the machines, equipment’s were parked  and The staff is also returning. The work employed 220 locals and about 70 non-local technicians. Due to the closure of the work, on the one hand, hundreds of people are losing their jobs, on the other hand, due to the poor condition of the road, accidents occur every day on earthen roads. 

Maulvi Kifayatullah, a resident of Ashriat, belongs to a religious party. He said that due to the closure of work, hundreds of people were  also becoming unemployed and the condition of roads is very bad. The people of this area made great sacrifices and allowed the road to be widened by renovating their houses, fields, shops and lands, but now work on it has been stopped, which has caused great frustration among the people. He said that four mosques were also martyred for paving the way. Similarly, our water pipelines, irrigation canals were all affected and we endured, but we are very disappointed to stop work. 

The best road for the development of any nation is considered to be the first step. If the roads here are good, it will be easier to carry goods and goods, which will develop the area. 

Zabihullah said that this work has been stopped for two months and there are big stands , ditches in the road which cause accidents every day. Abdul Kareem says the problems are getting worse because of the work stoppage. Tourists keep coming on this road. Half of the road is built, half is left, but the tourists do not know, due to which they often fall into a deep ditch , ravine and suffer loss of life and property. He said that a few days back the vehicle of a tourist from Punjab had fallen down at night due to which he was seriously injured and the vehicle was also completely damaged.  If the condition of the road remains the same then who will come to Chitral. 

Sher Khan, who was also working in the company, has been unemployed for two months now and his children are starving. He says there is still work to be done on water pipelines, irrigation canals and protective walls, but funds The work was stopped due to non-availability, which caused a lot of frustration among us. 

Irfanullah hails from Mohmand district is a Truck driver and carrying essential commodditie4s to Chitral. His truck has been faced to  accident in recent days and he has suffered a loss of Rs. 400,000. He says that the bad condition of the road leads to accidents. A Vigo car has also been involved in an accident on the side of the road and will continue to do so until the road is completed. In this regard, our correspondent repeatedly contacted Rafiq Alam, Lawari Tunnel Project Director, but he was not present in the office. When he was informed on his mobile phone that we need  your version in this regard he did not responded.  

To know the position of the government agency NHA, our correspondent called the headquarters of the National Highway Authority in Islamabad and contacted the concerned General Manager Mujtaba Memon and asked him the reason for the closure. The General Manager confirmed that the first PC-1 has exhausted  and now the NHA has sent the Revised PC-1 to the Finance Department. As soon as it is approved and the funds come, work on it will start. He said that we had sent PC-1 earlier but the Planning Commission had made observations on it and expressed reservations due to which these observations have been removed and revised PC-1 has been sent again. 

In response to a question, he said that the Korean company was working on the South Portal . Their work is almost complete. The main reason is that their country also cooperates with them financially. Receives its arrears from another country. However, he revealed that the Korean company Sambo also owes more than Rs 2 billion liabilities  to the NHA but it is a rich company and it does not matter to them. As well as  NHA tries to convince the contractor and take them into confidence. And completes the ongoing work later when the fund arrives we pay them. 

The political and social circles of Chitral have strongly demanded the federal government to immediately release funds for the completion of Lawari Tunnel and Approach, Link Road as the motorways in other districts started later were completed but the work of Lawari Tunnel was not complete yet. 

They also appealed to the Chief Justice of Pakistan to take suo motu notice of this serious matter and direct the federal government to immediately release the required funds for completion of Lawari Tunnel and approach  roads on both  sides. So that the people of Chitral also have a better road and these people can saved from accidents.

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