Reconsider ‘stop work’ order, NHAI tells TN govt

November 13, 2013

DC | G. Jagannath | 


Chennai: With the contractor of the Chennai port-Maduravoyal elevated corridor project making a fresh claim of Rs  945 crore, National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has written to the state government giving it a last ‘opportunity’ to reconsider its decision to stop the project failing which it would terminate the contract.“The NHAI board is of the tentative view that a last opportunity may be given to the state government for withdrawing the stoppage order failing which it will consider terminating the concessionaire agreement,” Satish Cha­ndra, member (Fin­ance) of NHAI said in a letter dated October 25 to Tamil Nadu chief secretary Sheela Balakrishnan.

The Rs 1,815-crore elevated corridor project was put on hold in March 2012 following a ‘stop work’ notice issued by the Water Resources Department alleging deviation in the alignment of the corridor along the banks of the Cooum from the originally approved alignment.

NHAI’s latest appeal to the state government came in the wake of the concessionaire, the Chennai Elevated Tollway Ltd (CETL), seeking compensation of Rs 945.16 crore for the losses suffered by it till September 30.

CETL team leader W. Pra­ka­sa Rao, in a re­cent letter to the general manager (technical), NHAI, New Delhi, sought payment of Rs 945 as compensation toward loss suffered by it within 30 days of receipt of his letter.

Sources in NHAI said that they would be forced to terminate the contract if the state government did not reverse its decision. “Holding the project for a long time will lead to payment of an hefty compensation to the contractor,” the official said.

The NHAI had also approached the Ma­dras High Court seeking a direction to qu­­ash the order stopping the work and it also submitted an additional affidavit stating that the state government is bound to bear all financial expenditure on account of stoppage of the project.



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