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CHD AIR PORT-Difficult to meet March 31 deadline: Contractor to HC Cites inclement weather, delay in civil works

February 26, 2019 05:37 AM


Difficult to meet March 31 deadline: Contractor to HC
Cites inclement weather, delay in civil works

CHANDIGARH: Tata SED, the contractor for electrical works as part of the Chandigarh International Airport runway expansion, on Monday told the Punjab and Haryana high court that it would be difficult to meet the March 31 deadline to begin 24x7 operations.

■ The Centre has told the high court that there will be no need for closures to install CAT-3B landing system at the airport.
The contractor’s counsel cited inclement weather and delay in completion of civil works as the reason for difficulties in carrying out the electrical works.

The Centre and Chandigarh International Airport Limited (CHIAL), the airport operator, have all along maintained that round-the-clock operations would start on April 1. The expansion work includes upgrade of runway by increasing its length from 9,000 feet to 10,400 feet so that wide-bodied aircraft can easily operate from here and connect the city to long-distance destinations in Europe, US and Australia.

“Met has predicted rain from tomorrow... Complete handover (of the runway) is yet to take place. After installation of lights, 10 days time period is required for mandatory safety checks,” the contractor’s counsel told the division bench presided over by chief justice Krishna Murari and justice Arun Palli during the resumed hearing on infrastructure-related issues at the airport.

The civil work was to be completed by the first week of February

but its contractor has missed even the February 20 deadline.

The HC bench reiterated that work should be completed by March 31 and sought deadlines for the different electrical works to be undertaken by Tata SED.

“We will see the explanation (for delay) and decide,” the bench observed, adding that not meeting deadlines by any stakeholder would be viewed seriously and invite action from the court. AFFIDAVIT SOUGHT ON LAND ACQUISITION Meanwhile, the HC sought an affidavit from the Chandigarh administration on land acquisition for installing CAT-3B facility. The UT had told court that acquisition of .66 acre of land would cost ₹1.5 crore.

However, during the hearing, court was told that market price would be ₹6 crore. The court was of the view that land owners could be paid the market price to speed up the work.

MOHALI GETS 3 MONTHS FOR ANCILLARY WORKS Even as Punjab advocate general Atul Nanda sought five months to complete ancillary works — removal of encroachments and clearing of drains — in the airport’s periphery, the HC granted only three months and sought status reports from time to time.

Two officers had been summoned. The state’s civil aviation secretary was present, but chief secretary Karan Avtar Singh appeared before the court in the morning and sought exemption from hearing due to the ongoing assembly session

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