The construction of Gautam Buddha International Airport (GBIA) witnesses another obstacle after Butwal Sub-Metropolitan City did not supply gravel and sand at the old rate and prevented the project from extracting riverbed materials.
The project, which has given high priority by the government, is about to reach the last stage. However, due to lack of raw materials, construction has stopped.
Earlier, the construction work was affected when the Chinese contractor did not receive the payment on time.
Butwal Sub-Metropolitan City refused to give gravel and sand at the old rate and stopped the project from extracting riverbed materials, three weeks ago.
The sub-metropolitan city signed an agreement with the project to provide 17,228 cubic metres of riverbed materials. They said that the issue remained to be resolved.
Pritesh Raj Pokharel, operator of Swatsam Construction Private Limited stated that the sub-metropolitan city had renege the deal saying that the rates quoted earlier were low.
He said that he has asked to refund the amount for not providing the materials after requesting it repeatedly.
According to him, the airport construction project including the runway, terminal building has started to get affected because of lack of riverbed supply.
Such issues seem pushing the aim of completing the project on time.
Prabesh Adhikari, chief engineer of the project committed to complete the project at the scheduled time by bringing the construction materials from neighbor district even if the sub-metropolitan city doesn’t supply the materials.
Adhikari stated that the government has announced to commence commercial flight from November month.
He also said that the construction work of the runway and taxi way will be completed within 10 days after the work is started in full phase whereas the runway, taxi way, stripe way, perimeter, tower and terminal buildings will completed by June 29, 2019.
While the construction was facing lack of riverbed materials, the ministry has also raise the problem of money after not filing the documents on time.
According to Chief Adhikari, the delay in payment issue has been reached from the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) to the ministry and is confident that the problem will be resolved soon.
He said that he is coordinating in the ministry to regularize the construction of the airport.
Ministry has allocated NRs 700 Million to the contractor company on May 13, 2019 and will take minimum 5 days to reach the contractor and till then the construction work will get affected.
Bill no. 20 was stopped of the construction company. The project itself paid about 37.4 per cent of about NRs 160 Million on April 16, 2019. The remaining 62 per cent will be paid after receiving approval from Asian Development Bank through Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation (MoCTCA).
Though, the receipt had been submitted to the National Pride Project Office under the CAAN in mid-April. After that the documents were submitted to the ministry on April 19. The ministry is supposed to forward the details to the Asian Development Bank (ADB), however, the documents have been stuck at the ministry and the project is yet to receive any response from the ministry.