Dilapidated condition of highways irks SC

Apex court summons NHA chairman along with details of highways across country

Aqeel Afzal October 14, 2021


The Supreme Court observed on Wednesday that the National Highway Authority (NHA) was not doing any quality work and summoned its chairman in person along with the details of the highways across the country.

A two-member bench of the apex court, headed by Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed and comprising Justice Mazhar Alam Khan Miankhel, heard a case regarding dilapidated condition of the RCD highway.

During the proceedings, the court asked the NHA to explain why police were not deployed on the Quetta-Karachi road for the safety of passengers. The plight of highways could endanger people's lives, the bench observed.

The chief justice asked why the Quetta-Karachi Road was not being built like the motorways. He added that all highways, except the Lahore-Islamabad motorway, had been left unattended. He pointed out that quality of work on reflectors and marking lines on the highways was substandard.

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The chief justice said that the markings on the roads washed away in a single rain shower. He added that a bridge was not built until 10 people die. The NHA was not doing any standard work, the chief justice observed. He directed that the condition of the Quetta-Karachi road should be improved up to 100%.

The chief justice further said that Chitral-Gilgit Road’s construction was shown “complete” in the papers but in reality, no such road existed. He also told the NHA that there were only rocks on Chitral-Gilgit road and a car could not ply on it.

The NHA chairman informed the court that the Chitral-Gilgit road was handed over to the NHA by provincial government a year ago. The chief justice said that the Karachi-Hyderabad road was not built by NHA. He added that billions of rupees was spent on renovating highways every year.

Justice Miankhel asked what was the expenditures and revenues of NHA? He added that people were ridiculed on roads in the name of searches. Later, the hearing of the case was adjourned until first week of December.



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