GILGIT: Gilgit-Baltistan Chief Minister Hafeezur Rehman has banned the use of imported coal tar for the construction and repair of roads in the region.
The Iranian material is smuggled into the country at cheaper rates and is readily available as the ideal choice for private contractors. However, the substandard material is not durable and the patched up roads fall apart soon.
“This practice should be stopped immediately,” Rahman said during his visit to the under-construction Choongi-Public Chowk Road on Tuesday. “Only material produced by Attock Refinery Limited should be used.”
The CM also directed works department officials to ensure their presence and constant supervision of the repair work.
“We aren’t going to compromise on these things,” Rahman said. “This is the only reason why the people voted us into power.”
He added an inspection team will investigate such projects and take the culprits to task.
He also directed engineers to ensure the road is constructed as per modern standards and has zebra crossings, traffic signals and streets lights. “This project should be complete before winters,” the CM added.
The two kilometre road has been in a dilapidated condition for a while now. The contract for its repair was awarded to a private contractor during the previous government. However, after raking in advance payments, the contractor disappeared, leaving the road in its original state.
The road’s completion is part of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz government’s 100-day plan. -- The Express Tribune