Published On: Thu, Dec 22nd, 2016

Gurupriya bridge construction goes on despite cash crunch in Odisha

gurupriyabridgeReport by Kishor Dash; Bhubaneswar: At a time when the executing agency, works department and district administration are doing their best for the completion of the Gurupriya bridge construction work , the demonetisation has certainly hit the construction work of mega infrastructure project like 172 crore Gurupriya Bridge, said to be the dream project of the Chief Minister Naveen Pattnaik, in the cut-off region, on the side of the vast Chitrakonda reservoir in the Malkangiri district of Orissa.

The construction site that heavily relies on daily wagers have seen the workforce going down to at least 20 percent in post-demonetisation. However, the pace of work has not been affected as the Kolkotta based Royal Infraconstru Limited; the agency who is executing the work managed the show with its permanent staff and available manpower while working 24X7.

We are facing difficulties in making total cash payment of Rs. 2.5 lakh to near about 140 labourers in a week as the State Bank of India (SBI) branch at Chitrakonda and Malkangiri manages to pay Rs.50, 000/- only due to shortage of money. The daily wagers want cash payment as they don’t have Bank accounts in their name, said the Royal Infraconstru Limited Project Manager Nirajnan Kumar to this portal.

However after giving in writing the weekly requirement towards labour payment, the Chitrakonda Branch of SBI has assured to start paying Rs.2.5 lakh every week soon, Kumar said while claiming work is in full swing despite the cash crunch.
On the other, the rising water level in the reservoir is said to be the major obstruction in undertaking the pile capping and piers erection work, the works department sources here said. While, the foundation of the pile cap lays at RL 452 meter ,the water level has been remained at a height of more than it thereby making it extremely difficult to go for pile capping and pier works, a works department official here said adding only 20 mm water is receding in a day. The water level was found to be at RL 458.4 today, he said.

Unless, either, the Balimela based OHPC Limited authority goes for more generation of power or more water is discharged from the dam to Andhra Pradesh, the water level would not go on receding thereby making it difficult to undertake the pile capping and pirt works construction , he said.

The construction work is on full swing and heading towards the completion within the stipulated time of September 2017, the Works Department sources here claimed adding 15 of the 24 piers have already been erected. Similarly, the number of total piles which went to 142 from 112 after the redesign of the piles, 118 pile structures have already been erected.Of the 66 girders, the construction of 8 has also been completed.

The work for the erection of at least 30 additional piles (P11 to P18) in the deep water zone is going on. In place of pre-stressed concrete girders, steel girders are being provided for these piles whose redesign was necessitated after the tilting of the piles between P12-P13 last year. New piers are being constructed in new locations and the tilted ones have already been abandoned, the official claimed.

This apart, of the 910 meter long bridge, the deck slabs has already been casted up to 41 meter each from Chitrakonda and Papermetla side in the rainy season itself to maintain the pace of work, he claimed adding man, machineries and resources are ready to further expedite the work once the water level starts receding.

We are working towards the completion of work and the pace of work so far means we are on target. Undertaking the bridge construction work in a very deep water zone is a tough and challenging but we have the skills and commitment for the job to meet the target, claimed a top official of works department here.

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