Ponda: Reacting to the Curti Khandepar retaining wall collapse incident, which has damaged two major water pipelines, PWD Minister Deepak Pauskar Sunday blamed the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) for their negligence.
Despite several requests and correspondence from the PWD’s water section, the NHAI ignored the requests
to shift the water pipelines from one side of the national highway to the other side which led to the collapse of the retaining wall, said the PWD Minister.
Pauskar said that the retaining wall constructed at Curti Khandepar was old and that the PWD had alerted the NHAI about it when NHAI started road-widening work. However, despite being cautioned, they carried out the mud dumping work besides the retaining wall which put pressure on the wall. Pauskar said that later the PWD even wrote to the NHAI on several occasions requesting them to shift the pipelines to other side of the road to avoid any incident. However, the NHAI did not pay attention to the issue as a result of which the retaining wall collapsed, said the PWD Minister, speaking to this daily.
As per the information, the 750-mm diameter water pipeline was laid in 1980 on pedestal system, while the 900-mm diameter pipeline was laid in 2002 and considering the pressure on the lines, a retaining wall was constructed besides the road to support the pipelines.
In 2017, NHAI took up road-widening work near Curti Khandepar area. The PWD had marked the Curti Khandepar stretch of the pipeline as sensitive for mud-filling, as the retaining wall was meant to only support the pipelines and not act as an earthen embankment to support heavy load. Despite this, the NHAI started dumping mud on the Curti Khandepar stretch of the road thus putting a lot of pressure on the retaining wall.
According to information, there were four pipelines passing along the national highway but after several requests from the PWD, the NHAI had shifted two water pipelines recently.