SRINAGAR, OCTOBER 27: In a bid to improve the quality of infrastructure in road sector and fix responsibility for proper maintenance of assets, the Administrative Council (AC), which met here under the chairmanship of Lieutenant Governor, Manoj Sinha, approved the rollout of the 3rd party inspection guidelines in Jammu and Kashmir.

Farooq Khan and Rajeev Rai Bhatnagar, Advisors to the Lieutenant Governor, Dr. Arun Kumar Mehta, Chief Secretary, J&K and Nitishwar Kumar, Principal Secretary to the Lieutenant Governor attended the meeting.

The new guidelines have been framed on the lines of established regulations in respect of road network created under the PMGSY scheme. Accordingly, structured control mechanism is being established in PW(R&B) Department to carry out scientific and periodic independent inspections for all district roads and state highways by undertaking monitoring via in-house departmental engineers and empanelled consultant of National stature.

The quality control mechanism also defines procedures and timelines to properly govern preparation of realistic detailed project reports (DPRs); preparation of bid documents and effective selection process for procurement of works; quality control on material and workmanship through enforcement of technical standard; and quality control requirement by regular testing, close supervision and inspection.

The mechanism has provisions for ensuring preparation of realistic detailed project report (DPR) on the basis of detailed drawings and design, with adequate attention to investigations and pre-construction activities which are essential for proper design and estimation of the project as per standard IS, IRC codes of practice and as per JKPWD Engineering Manual 2021 and other guidelines issued by the department for time to time; preparation of bid documents and effective selection process for procurement of works, based on proven capacity and ability of the contractors in accordance with the relevant guidelines; constant monitoring of projects by undertaking on-site supervision, Quality Control measures including materials and workmanship, primarily through testing.

The new guidelines make it mandatory to conduct independent quality tests in accordance with the standard codal requirements and verify that the quality management system is achieving its intended objectives. They also prescribe non-release of payments to the contractors until works are inspected and graded satisfactory by the quality monitor.

Further, the Directorate of Design, Inspection & Quality Control which has the mandate for designing and quality control, shall be the Nodal Agency for implementation of Quality Control Mechanism independently under overall supervision of PW(R&B) Department as Quality Control Unit.

With the rollout of 3rd party inspection system, the quality of works executed under various programmes/schemes in road sector will be brought under scrutiny and responsibilities will be fixed for non/under performance of various agencies.

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