A member of the parliament has claimed that the Italian contractor of the Melamchi Drinking Water Project, Cooperativa Muratori e Cementisti (CMC) di Ravenna, has reportedly demanded Rs 2.52 billion from the government to resume construction works.
Speaking during a meeting of National Concern and Coordination Committee under the National Assembly today, parliament member Surendra Raj Pandey, claimed government is trying to bring back CMC to resume works of project by paying aforementioned amount without holding any consultations with stakeholders.
Pandey accused Minister of Water Supply Bina Magar and other ministry officials of not being transparent with their work procedures related to the Melamchi project. “We have summoned her several times to the committee but she has always refused to attend the meeting and address our genuine concerns,” said Pandey, who is the coordinator of the sub-panel that has been assigned the responsibility to submit a report on the reasons behind the delay in the construction works of the project to the full committee.
He further added that Minister Magar has been refusing to attend the committee’s meetings due to vested interests.
Pandey also suggested the government to legally terminate CMC’s project contract and appoint a new contractor.
Meanwhile, Minister Magar released a press statement today, stating that the government is committed to completing the project. She informed that the ministry has been holding discussions with stakeholders to look for alternatives ways to complete the project. “Only a few works of the project remain to be completed and the present situation developed due to the contractor, which refused to complete the project citing its financial problems,” the statement reads.
Minister Magar clarified the government will take a proper decision as per the law and nothing has been decided yet.
Meanwhile, 28 sub-contractors of the Melamchi Water Supply Project working for CMC have claimed that they have yet to receive payments totalling Rs 1.50 billion.
The Himalayan Times