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Assam: Garbage Used for Road Construction; Fuels Murmurs of Multi-Crore Scam

Margherita, April 30, 2020:

Amid the nationwide lockdown that has been called in a bid to curtail the spread of the deadly pandemic COVID-19, it has been discovered that in Margherita town of Upper Assam, “garbage” is being used during the construction of the National Highway-38. The garbage is reportedly being used in Baragolai and Tirap Colliery areas.
Kanchan Bora, the General Secretary of Asom Jatiyotabadi Yuba Chatra Parishad (AJYCP), am indigenous students’ body has lamented the entire incident. “It is very unfortunate and sad that National Highway Construction company employees seem to be using garbage to construct the road along the National Highway 38 road instead of stones, sand, coal-tar and other materials which should be used instead.
Kanchan Bora said that a Rajasthan-based National-Highway construction company got a tender to construct the National Highway road of Margherita, but they seem to be doing away with funds meant for public welfare. “It is very much possible that they have formed a nexus with the Margherita administration and the National Highway Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited (NHIDCL), the Rajasthan company seems to have siphoned off some of the funds.”
The activist has now demanded answers from the Assam Chief Minister, Sarbananda Sonowal, as to why garbage is being used in the construction of roads in Tinsukia and urged the CM to punish those who are culpable.
It needs mention here that this is not the first time that anomalies have been reported during the construction of roads in the state of Assam.
Not too long ago, tribal residents of Dima Hasao raised a similar complaint after it came to notice that newly constructed roads could be peeled off by hand.
On March 21, the Dimasa Student Union (DSU) inspected India’s longest PMGAY project in Dima Hasao district of Assam. A delegate of Dimasa Student Union, including the president of the body, inspected Mahur-Laisong road which length is about 63 kms in length.
The work was allotted to the ABCI infrastructure Pvt Ltd construction company on March 12, 2019 but during one year of construction, only 500 meters of the work has been completed. Moreover, the standard of the work is so poor that the topping can be removed by hand, it was observed.
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