NH-29 stretch to reopen from today

DIMAPUR, FEB 11 (NPN) | Publish Date: 2/11/2021 1:17:16 PM IST

National Highway-29 stretch would finally be opened for two-way traffic between 6 a.m. and 10 a.m., and 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. from Friday. The move follows governor RN Ravi’s review of the ongoing traffic restrictions on the highway on Thursday. 

After elaborate deliberations and due regard to the safety needs of commuters, it was decided that total restriction on traffic was no longer required and hence the highway would be opened for the commuters a press note through PRO Raj Bhavan stated.

While NHIDCL will ensure that the contractors place enough resources on the ground and take sufficient measures to stabilise the rocks and clear the debris without delay, the Dimapur district administration will review the situation after one week for further easing of traffic. Earlier, the governor expressed his deep concern over untold hardships to the public due to continuing traffic restrictions on the highway. 

He also conveyed his displeasure to the contractors for reckless rock blasting, which was the cause of the heavy rock slide, while advising the State government to explore legal actions and hold the erring contractors accountable for their reckless acts. 

The review meeting was attended by ADGP and special secretary (home) SR Saravanan, PWD engineer-in-chief Limatongdang Jamir, PWD chief engineer (NH) Kezha Theünuo, DC Dimapur Rajesh S, commissioner of police Dimapur Rothihu Tetseo and NHIDCL executive director (P) MS Deol.

In an order, DC Dimapur Thursday stated that light vehicles will be allowed to ply from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. and heavy vehicles from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Strictly follow all safety measures: WSYF to NHIDCL

Asserting that it has been closely observing the causes that led to mudslides and rockslides along the NH-29 stretch from Patkai Bridge to Kukidolong, the Western Sumi Youth Front (WSYF) urged the National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited to strictly follow all safety measures during the four-lane road construction.

WSYF through its media cell said that the February 2 rockslide incident where several vehicles were damaged, three persons injured and many other similar incidents in the past could have been avoided if the responsible authorities particularly NHIDCL had taken proper safety measures while undertaking earth cutting and blasting activities.

WSYF said the major cause of mudslides and rockslides was due to steep cutting instead of adopting the step cutting and slope cutting method. While the contractors carry out works as specified and instructed, WSYF said the responsibility of the disasters should be owned by NHIDCL, which was specifying to the contractors regarding the methodology and style of works.

It claimed that another cause why steep cutting was being carried out appeared to be owing to buying of limited land space for the purpose of four-lane in order to cut down on land compensation expenses. WSYF said that since step cutting and slope cutting required larger area of land and the limited land acquired did not permit ample space to adopt such method, the NHIDCL was resorting to steep cutting, which was proving disastrous and endangering the lives.

The companies, it said would construct the road and leave the state, but similar disasters would continue to happen so long as proper safety measures were not adopted by NHIDCL. 

The front said this was not the first time that NHIDCL was undertaking a road project, but it has expertise all over the country. “Despite such expertise, if such disasters are happening owing to non-adherence to certain safety measures, then it is clearly a man-made disaster and not a natural disaster,” WSYF stated.

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