Poor planning and non-utilisation of assets led to idle investment of Rs 6 crore, govt went ahead with project despite studies showing that cruise couldn’t pass through most of bridges: CAG
Srinagar, Aug 16 :
The Comptroller and Auditor General of India has revealed that poor project planning and non-utilization of assets created for water transport in river Jhelum in Srinagar has led to an idle investment of Rs six crore.
In its report tabled in the Parliament on August 09, the CAG said the Jammu & Kashmir government went ahead with the project despite studies showing that the cruise could not pass under most of the bridges of Srinagar city.
“As per the initial studies conducted by M/s Hyderabad Boat Builders, the cruise could not pass under most of the bridges of the Srinagar city, thus making the project quite unviable. Despite this, the Implementing agency went ahead with the execution of the project,” reads the report accessed by news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO).
According to the report, the Jammu & Kashmir Tourism Development Corporation had procured two cruise boats valuing Rs 1.40 crore in April 2017.
But these boats remained docked in the Jhelum River in Srinagar and could not be utilised for want of floating jetties, the report states.
The CAG further revealed that the cruise has been not made still functional despite completion of the entire project.
“As the work of installation and commissioning of jetties was given to Irrigation & Flood Control Department only in April 2021, the cruise boats remained idle for more than five years. The entire project is now completed at a total cost of Rs 6 crore. However, the cruise has not been made functional and is lying idle, thus making the entire investment of Rs 6 crore unfruitful,” the report adds.
In its response to CAG, the J&K Government submitted that in February 2022 that they were trying to get the boats operational through Srinagar Smart City Limited.
“The reply is not tenable as these boats remained parked for more than five years in river Jhelum and as on date the cruise boats were still not operational. In the absence of being functional, deterioration of assets cannot be ruled out,” the report states—(KNO)