CAG blows Karnataka govt about pending road works

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A number of road projects are pending over the years in the state of Karnataka though the state government has invested an adequate amount of money, as per the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG), which blew the government over not furnishing reasons for the pending works.

These projects are estimated to be Rs 2,341.53 crore, major of them are road works.

The CAG report based on Finance Accounts tabulated for the current legislative session depicts that 1,778 works with the amount of Rs 2,164.53 crore was given approval during 2015 to 2019 and the work was pending for a period of five years, and a count of 38 works of Rs 177 crore and was released during 2010 -14 was incomplete for a period of five years.

The report said, “A scrutiny of information furnished by different Public Works/Irrigation Department has revealed that a large number of works in which substantial amount was spent are remaining incomplete.”

From the incomplete works, 70 per cent of them comprised of road works, after which it was irrigation projects and bridges.

Deputy Chief Minister Govind Karjol, leading the Department of Public Works gave several reasons which led to delay. He said to DH, “For bridges and culverts, the delay is primarily due to lack of working season due to rainfall. If rainfall is more in the pre-monsoon season, all these works cannot be taken up.”

Karjol further added that contractor delays and litigation in courts were the key reasons for the incomplete road works, and in some instances, lack of funds was another reason.

A senior official from PWD said that additional work had been given in the mid-year with no assigned budget amount has also contributed to pending work.

The official added, “If new projects are approved in the middle of the year, funds are generally diverted from other projects. This is also among the reasons for projects to be kept pending for years.”

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