Lockdown halts construction of Gautam Buddha Int'l Airport - English Version of Pharak Sandesh

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Sunday, April 5, 2020

Lockdown halts construction of Gautam Buddha Int'l Airport

Bhairahawa, April 5 (RSS): The construction of the Gautam Buddha International Airport, the national pride project, based in Sidhharthanagar of Rupandehi district has been badly slowed due to the nationwide lockdown implemented by the government to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

The project is being implemented by a Chinese Company so far reports almost 90 percent construction progress as constructions of gross physical infrastructure including a runway, international terminal building, taxi way, fixing of CCTVs and control tower have already been completed. Local workers hired for the projects are already out of work as they have returned home with the announcement of lockdown. Transportation of purchased construction equipment up to the construction site has been halted due to stay home order, according to project chief Prabesh Adhikari. 

The North West Civil Aviation had been awarded the airport construction contract on December 31, 2014 at a cost of around Rs 6.23 billion and the first deadline was till December 2017. The contract was given through a global tender process. The contract term has been extended time and again as the company expressed its inability to finish on time, citing adversities caused by the Tarai Madhesh movement, southern blockage and other internal reasons. Project chief said it seems hard to complete the project even in the latest deadline as works were largely affected by lockdown. 

The project is supported by the Asian Development Bank and its area coverage is larger than of Tribhuvan International Airport, the sole international airport in the country.

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