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Government to make public names of the non-performing contractors

By Our Reporter
Home Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa, who was lauded by public for ending syndicate in public transportation sector, has now tried to crack down on the construction contractors who do not complete the construction of projects in time.
He has already instructed the authorities to collect the list of the defaulting contractors and submit them to the ministry. The Ministry has already made names of a few contractors public while a few were arrested.
The impact of the move has already been noticed as a few contractors have resumed works in many places. However, politically well-connected contractors remain untouched by the move. Instead a few contractors have challenged the move accusing the Home Minister of trying to become a dictator.
Of course, cartel also exists in the contractor sector with a few contractor companies holding many of the contracts for a long time without doing any work. This is a reason why majority of the development projects in Nepal do not complete in time.  Moreover, many of the contractors companies are owned by powerful politicians or those who have nexus with the politicians.
Performances of Pappu Construction owned by lawmaker Hari Narayan Prasad Rauniyar of the ruling Sanghiya Samajbadi Forum-Nepal and that of Shailung Construction, whose chairman Sharada Prasad Adhikari is the landlord of CPN chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal, are of particular interest for the number of projects being built and the delays. Progress in a number of projects handled by these two companies is dismal, raising questions if they enjoy political protection. For example, a bridge over Bagmati River at Tinkune in Kathmandu was supposed to be completed on June 19 this year. With Pappu Construction failing to work on time, the progress has been disappointing at 20-25 percent, according to the Department of Roads.
The Bagmati bridge is among a dozen projects undertaken by Pappu Construction, which are running behind their schedule. The company is notorious for bidding government projects at the lowest price but not completing them on time. Lawmaker Rauniyar blamed the government for the delays in works undertaken by his company.
Shailung also failed to complete works on the Bishalnagar-Chandol-Chakrapath road section and the Buddhnagar-Ratna Rajyalaxmi School section of the road on time. Here, Adhikari blamed obstruction by locals for the delays.
There are other several contractors who often delay in completing the work.  Now that when Home Minister has intended to punish the contractors, the people have a high hope regarding the correction. But if politicians like Dahal gives protection to bad contractors, the move will not yield the desired results.

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