Gorakh hill resort project in doldrums

21 Aug 2006

Email

KOTRI, Aug 20: Despite passage of eight years and expenditure of more than Rs200 million, the fate of the Gorakh hill station project still hangs in the balance because of indifference of the government.

The completion date of the project was December 31, 2005, which was later extended to June 2006, but even basic infrastructure of the project is yet to take shape.

An amount of Rs1 billion was allocated for it in August 1998 and out of it Rs45.252 million were released.

The hill resort project included development of a waterfall, cable chair lift from the Gorakh hill to the Chokor hill, 10-beded hospital, water filter plant, security check post and race course.

No work has been initiated on any of the projects despite availability of funds.

The PC-1 of the project was revised and an amount of Rs198.269 million was released on Feb 24, 2004.

The funds were meant for constructing a road from Wahi Pandhi to Gorakh hill at a cost of Rs86.353 million, development of water supply scheme at the cost of Rs34.636 million and purchasing vehicles and other equipment at a cost of Rs8 million.

Sources said that from the funds only a katcha road from Wahi Pandhi to Gorakh had been constructed.

A two-room rest house at the site of the project has also been constructed.

Former Prime Minister Mir Zafarullah Jamali during his visit to the area took serious notice of poor quality of road and ordered holding of a probe into it.

The current position is that a night watchman of the project is waiting for his salary.

The Gorakh hill is not only a recreational resort, but it would provide revenue of millions of rupees to state coffers.

It was estimated that some 0.2 million local and foreign tourists would visit the beautiful hill station every year.

President Gen Pervez Musharraf has taken a serious notice that despite release of funds and the passage of eight years only one road of the project has been completed till yet.

Sources said the president had instructed Sindh Chief Minister Dr Arbab Ghulam Rahim to pay a visit to the Gorakh hill and submit him a report into current status of the project.

They said that the Sindh chief minister would soon visit the area.—PPI