9 highway bridges set for operation after decision on compensation


By Basanta Parajuli,Bharatpur, Mar. 17: After the federal cabinet decided to allocate budget for compensation to property affected along the road, authorities have begun process to bring nine new bridges into operation along the Narayangadh-Mugling road section.

According to engineer Krishna Acharya of Nagdhunga-Mugling Road Project, the federal government has managed budget to provide compensation to houses and properties encroached by the road expansion.

"Nine bridges were constructed already. However, we couldn’t bring them into operation as the government hadn’t decided on the compensation. Now, the way is cleared to start vehicular movement on the bridges," said Acharya.

Citing that Tuesday's meeting of the council of ministers decided to allocate Rs. 10 million as compensation, the project plans to complete necessary process at the Ministry of Finance at the earliest to receive the amount.

The project has to pay compensation to 25 houses nearby the constructed bridges for which they required Rs. 10.8 million. However, they expect to pay the compensation with the Rs. 10 million assured by the government under the new directive regarding compensation. 

In the lack of budget for compensation, the bridges couldn’t be brought into operation despite their completion a year ago.

While the bridges were constructed under the financial assistance from the World Bank, the Nepal government was liable to pay compensation to the property encroached by the road nearby the bridges. However, as no budget was allocated for the compensation yet, the affected families hadn’t allowed the bridges to come into operation.

"Once the compensation amount is received, the nine bridges will be handed over to the Department of Roads and brought into operation," said Acharya.

Two years ago, a contract was signed with Anak Construction to construct 15 bridges along the Narayangadh-Mugling section under the "design and build" system. The contractor has completed nine bridges until now, and six bridges are under construction.

The contract for 15 bridge construction was signed under an agreement of Rs. 1.270 billion. The bridges are 9 to 11 metres wide based on the requirement of the road section. 

While the nine completed bridges could help reduce traffic congestion along several sections, the completion of all 15 bridges would be of great assistance to make commuting along the Narayangadh-Mugling section more convenient.

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