February 26: The due payment to sub-contractors and suppliers of Melamchi Water Supply Project by the Italian company, CMC di Ravenna, has not yet been fixed.
CMC was the main contractor of the project before it abandoned the it with just 5 percent works remaining.
The Ministry of Water Supply and Sanitation has stated that although the wages remaining to be paid to the local labours has been finalized, the payment to the sub-contractors and suppliers has not been ascertained yet
The ministry has formed a technical committee to study about the dues the Italian company owes to the sub contractors and suppliers on the basis of the claims made by them.
Spokesperson of the ministry, Ritesh Kumar Shakya, said it will take some more time to pay the sub-contractor companies for the materials they have supplied for the project. "Verification is being done to check whether the claims made by the companies for payment of their dues are correct or not. The payment process will be forwarded once the verification is concluded," he said.
The Italian company had not paid the workers and the sub-contractors when it left the project all of a sudden in December 2018. Since then the sub-contractors and suppliers had been demanding that either the government should make CMC pay them or it itself pay their dues. They had also obstructed the project's work demanding the payment. The government signed an agreement with Sino Hydro Corporation, a Chinese construction company, for the construction of the remaining works of the project after the Italian company deserted it.
As per the agreement, the Chinese company is required to complete the construction within 15 months since the signing of the agreement.
The technical committee formed for resolving the problem related to the payment of the dues owed by the Italian company has said the problem would be sorted out within this week. It has also been learnt that the Ministry is preparing to issue a 'white paper' declaring that Melamchi Water Supply Project would be completed within July this year. (RSS)