Cong seeks central agency probe, demands action against subcontractor

Shillong,May 23: The Congress on Monday asked the state government to suspend the Assembly construction work and take action against the sub contractor besides initiating a high level probe by any central agency.

Addressing a press conference at Congress Bhavan, the Congress leaders PN Syiem and Deborah Marak said that probe should be immediately instituted.


To a question, Syiem, who is the MPCC working president, said it is not only the role of Chief Minister or PWD Minister but the entire PWD is exposed after these incidents including ISBT construction and damage to Mawlai bridge.

According to Syiem, the work on the new Assembly premises has to be stopped immediately and a reputed competent agency should  be entrusted to check the quality of construction and thorough safety audit should be made before further construction.

As per the tender clause, there was no scope of subcontracting, but it is evident, the qualifying firm, Uttar Pradesh-Rajkiya Nirman Nigam (UP-RNN). had subcontracted the work to Badri Rai & Company Ltd (BRC), a construction based company from Assam, which has got no experience in dome structure building and this firm is executing the work, Syiem said.

He added that during the tender process, the company quoted less amount which itself exposes some hidden interest.

In a separate statement, the MPCC said the damage to the dome of Assembly building  at Mawdiangdiang on Sunday is only a tip of the iceberg of the rot that lies beneath the willy nilly functioning of the present NPP- led government under Chief Minister Conrad Sangma and his Deputy Prestone Tynsong.

The collapse of the dome casts serious doubts about the real intention of the government and the officers who are tasked to carry out infrastructure work and other projects.

In fact, the people of the state must thank the rain gods for helping expose the pathetic quality of work in government projects which has been okayed by the present government to contractors of questionable repute, the MPCC said.

“We are now seeing the actual state of affairs of our roads, buildings and bridges which are cracking and now the prestige of the seat of governance is at stake. This is infact extremely shameful as never in the history of the state has any infrastructure which houses people’s representatives has been comprised by any government in the past. “Take the old Assembly building for example, it still is a strong structure or even the present make shift building, but now we have people in the government who are willing to sell the reputation of the state”, the Congress said.

The revelations of the poor quality of work in government projects have left the deputy Chief Minister and the Executive Engineer (PWD, Building) with no other choice ‘but to play shifting the buck game or find lame excuses’.

“Soon after leakages and flooding of the ISBT premises, Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong refrained from finding flaws with the contractors but fixed the blame on the officers responsible, saying they would be taken to task and we are yet to see any action on the same, then came the collapse of the Assembly dome on Sunday, the Executive Engineer of the PWD (Building), Ransom Sutnga said the dome design was too heavy for the structure which subsequently led to this incident, but the design has been vetted by none other than one of the best engineering Institutions of the country, IIT-Rourkee. It is also understood that as the ease of shifting the blame to IIT-Rourkee will not fare well with the reputation of the state department and any lay man can understand that the problem lies with the quality of construction..

The MPCC said the work on the new Assembly premises has to be stopped immediately and a reputed competent agency to be entrusted to check the quality of construction and thorough safety audit to be made before further construction.

Deafening sillence of CM 

“More strikingly, in all of these, the deafening silence of Chief Minister Conrad Sangma makes such incidents all the more murkier. He is more busy in casinos and procuring land for a green airport ignoring the existing infrastructure and land that has been acquired for expanding the airport. Surely, there is more than that meets the eye in all of these. The question to ask is whether all of this, is a way of ensuring that ruling party has its bags full and come the next election, will go to any extent, even if it’s about selling the reputation of the state and its prestige”, it said.

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