The Kerala Public Works Department is miserably failing to carry forward the City Roads Improvement Programme in Thiruvananthapuram and the Kerala State Transport Project for improving several roads including the M. C. Road. The Public Works Minister Mons Joseph is even unable to set a target for completion of the works.
While in the Opposition, the LDF had alleged corruption and cost escalation of the project. Upon assuming power, the LDF government stopped payments to the contractors leading to stalling of the project. Though it renegotiated the projects, cost only went up.
One should pity the Minister when he says that a few electric posts and a tree are in the way of resuming work two years after the present govenrment came to power. All the hullabaloo about the tree is being made when hundreds of forest trees are being cut in the Idukki district.
If there was corruption in the original contract, what the government should have done was to bring those responsible to the book. This, it has not done. There was not even a vigilance enquiry (though such enquiries end up with a whimper). Renegotiation of any project is prone to corruption. The present Opposition is probably silent about possible corruption in the government agreeing to a higher bid because allegations could boomerang on it.