Nat’l pride projects fall short on quality compliance: NVC

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Sep 9, 2016-

The contractor of Babai Irrigation Project was supposed to submit Quality Assurance Plan (QAP), a process that assures durability of the construction including testing schedule and quality control procedure, before the construction began. But the work was started without submitting the QAP.

This is not the only national pride project that has failed quality assurance compliance. National Vigilance Centre’s (NVC) flagship annual report 2015-16 has pointed many shortcomings related to quality in the construction of Sikta Irrigation Project.

Due to the lack of proper filling of earth materials in the slope, smaller size of boulders, lack of skilled manpower and negligence of the contractor and client supervisors have created certain shortcomings in the construction going against the set specifications, according to NVC .

The quality of the construction of the main canal of the Sikta project has been questioned after a 15-metre section of the cancel was damaged when the water was released into the canal for a test in July. Cracks had appeared in different parts of the canal.

NVC said the shortcomings pointed out in the report were found based on a technical test conducted by independent and experienced engineers. “As we hire the technical auditors from outside the government who don’t have conflict of interest in the project, the faults found by them are the reality,” said Chiranjeevi Jha, senior division engineer at NVC. 

The engineers having at least 10 years of experience in the specified field become eligible to conduct technical audit of projects, according to NVC requirement.

The auditors hired by NVC had conducted technical tests of 12 national pride projects in the last fiscal year. They have summated the audit reports of seven projects. Some sort of problems have been found in almost all projects, according to NVC. 

As per the audit report of the Babai project, five cases of non-compliances have been found, while such cases are eight in the case of Sikta, according to NVC.

The audit has also pointed out shortcomings in the North-South Kaligandaki Road. As per the specifications of the Department of Roads (DoR), a request of inspection, subsequent inspection sheet, daily work output and site dairy should be maintained at the site office. But this provision was found overlooked as engineering construction practice was not fully followed, according to the NVC report.

Some shortcomings were also found in the Mid-Hill Highway (Eastern Sector), but they were not significantly problematic. 

For example, landside affected the traffic of the road which, according to the set specification, should not be the case. Beside technical shortcomings, the food and safety related problems of the project staffers have also been pointed out in the audit report.

In the case of Melanchi Water Supply Project, the contractor didn’t arrange sufficient supply of suitable food for staffers and workers at the reasonable price, the report says. It is due to the lack of study about the specification on food and negligence of site supervisor.

The workers were found working without safety belt and gloves although good arrangement of safety and health in compliance in line with all regulation and working rules related to safety, security, and health should have been made, according to the report.

In the case of the Postal Roads, the technical audit found poor progress report in construction work in Donda River Bridge due to earthquake and Tarai banda.


project Status

Project                                                No of non-compliances

Sikta Irrigation Project                                       8

Babai Irrigation Project                                      5

North South Kaligandaki Road Project             7

Mid-Hill Highway (Eastern)                              4

Mid-Hill Highway (Western Sector Baitadai)   —

Postal Roads Project (Donda River Bridge)       3

Melamchi Water Supply Project                         3

                                                                   Source: National Vigilance Centre     

Published: 09-09-2016 09:28

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