Punjab government’s various ambitious projects such as Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS) Amritsar, Inter State Bust Terminal (ISBT) Mohali and Heritage Village Amritsar are yet to see light of day after having missed several deadlines.Regardless, the Punjab government officers maintained that most of the projects are in final phase and likely to be operational by the end of this financial year. The list is long with other similar projects such as construction of five star hotels in Amritsar, Bathinda and Ludhiana, setting up of diagnostic centres in Punjab, including Ropar-Chamkaur Sahib road.
Earlier, Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal had inspected various development projects, including the BRTS. While giving instructions, he had asked the authorities concerned to finish the project by July. Officials involved in construction of the BRTS project said they were facing some problems regarding removal of several government and non-government structures.With a total length of 30.73 km, the BRTS project aims to provide mass transport to residents of the border city, besides reducing traffic mess and other bottlenecks.
Punjab Infrastructure Development Board (PIDB) outsourced the construction work for the BRTS project to a private firm while the PWD (B&R) was made the executing agency.Managing Director of PIDB Dipinder Singh said, “There are many projects being managed by PIDB and most of them are likely to be completed by the end of this financial year. The BRTS Amritsar project is in its final shape as the Railway’s approval to construct a portion over railway lines close to Bhanderi over bridge has come. We are expected to start the functioning of BRTS Amritsar till December 15.”
Similarly, another of Deputy Chief Minister’s dream projects, ISBT Mohali, was to be operational on July 31. After missing so many deadlines ISBT’s uncertainty continues to prevail over its taking off anytime soon.The private company, which has completed less than one-third of the project in eight years, has already been served with a notice of termination of the agreement under the public-private partnership (PPP) mode by Greater Mohali Area Development Aauthority (GMADA) due to delay in its completion. The company has also been levied a fine of over Rs 50 crore by GMADA for the delay in the project. The company is yet to clear the dues. The company claims it has filed a reply.Managing Director of JMD Heritage Lawns Ish Gambhir said that the village resort is in the final stages of execution.
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