HC orders authorities to open bypass by April 6,told user fee schedule has been published in official gazette and notified in newspapers.
Finally,the Pinjore-Parwanoo bypass will be thrown open to the public after midnight today (Thursday night). Putting an end to the inordinate delay,the Punjab and Haryana High Court today directed the authorities to open the bypass by Friday April 6. On March 22,a division bench comprising Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice Mahesh Grover had directed the schedule of user fees to be published in the official gazette within 10 days and,thereafter,the concessionaire company was directed to make the highway operational within three days.
The Bench was today told that the schedule of user fees was published in the official gazette on April 2 and was notified in the newspapers today. According to the concessionaire company,the public has been notified that the highway would be operational from April 6.
However,it was pointed that in the meantime a letter has been received by the concessionaire company from NHAI that the highway can be made operational only after 10 days. The counsel for NHAI stated that the stipulation with regard to 10 days is being insisted on in terms of the agreement between NHAI and the concessionaire company.
On March 22,when we had recorded our order requiring the concessionaire company to make the highway operational within three days of the date of publication of the schedule of user fees,the aforesaid clause of the agreement by and between the parties was not pointed out to us though,on the said date,as would be evident from the order itself,high officials of the NHAI were present in Court, reads the order.
The Bench further ordered,Be that as it may,the object behind the stipulation of 10 days requirement is intended to enable the public/ users of the highway to be aware of the fact that the highway is ready for operations. In the present case,according to the concessionaire company,all steps have been taken in advance to make the public aware of the said fact. Having regard to the object behind the said requirement of 10 days notice to the public as spelt out in the agreement,the failure on the part of NHAI to inform the Court of such a clause in the agreement and in view of the clear direction issued by the Court for making the highway operational within three days,we now direct that the same be made operational with effect from April 6 as notified to the public by the concessionaire company. The toll tax for a car/ jeep/ van will be Rs 23 for one-way trip.