Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, April 12
Nearly one-and-a-half years after ordering a Vigilance inquiry into alleged irregularities in the construction work of the Kaushalya Dam on the Kaushalya river in the vicinity of the Panchkula-Shimla road, near Pinjore, Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar today made a surprise visit to the dam.
Accompanied by BJP’s Chief Whip and Panchkula MLA Gian Chand Gupta, the CM visited the site while on way to a religious programme in Kalka, apparently to have firsthand knowledge of the project, which had been in the eye of the storm for wrong reasons.
In December 2014, Khattar had directed the State Vigilance Bureau to probe the alleged irregularities in the construction work of the Kaushalya dam during the Congress government headed by former Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda.
A Pinjore-based NGO had alleged certain irregularities in the construction work, including increase in the width of the wall of the dam to allegedly facilitate a big builder, whose assignment has come up with a housing project in the Pinjore-Kalka Urban Complex.
Nearly Rs 217 crore had reportedly been spent on the project, which was supposed to be completed in Rs 51 crore, raising suspicions on the intentions of the previous government, Gupta alleged.
Similarly, the width of the wall of the dam was extended from 12 m to 30 m by the department, which increased the construction value from Rs 118 crore to Rs 180 crore.
The Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) had spent Rs 23 crore to lay a pipeline from the dam to Panchkula city to provide drinking water to the residents. However, the project failed to serve the purpose as the water in the dam is inadequate.
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