The Standing Committee on Communications took strict notice of the absence of Chairman NHA, Mr. Jawad Rafique Malik and showed grave concern regarding non-compliance of directions and failure to provide desired information. A letter of displeasure will be sent to Chairman Senate in this regard.
A sub-Committee was formed under the convenership of Senator Fida Muhammad Khan to review details of revenue collected from toll plazas on National Highway and Motorways during the period from 2013 to 2019 and amount utilized on the maintenance and renovation GT road before Lahore and Islamabad /Rawalpindi. National Highway Authority (NHA) monthly statements and details of utilization will also be reviewed.
While discussing construction /upgrade of road from Dirgai Shabozai to Taunsa Sharif, the Committee was informed that this came under the purview of the Balochistan Government and that the main issue that hampered progress on the project was lack of funds. It was revealed that Government of Balochistan has already paid 80 percent of its share. The Committee directed that ACS Balochistan be summoned along with the Finance Division to present more details regarding this issue.
Taking up the issue of axle road on motorway and highways, the Committee was informed that 95 percent of cargo with transported by road in Pakistan. Axle overloading causes numerous ills including pavement deterioration, road capacity reduction and high fuel consumption. In addition to all of this, it also poses a huge risk to life. The Committee was informed that the Ministry of Communication had constituted a Committee to formulate a model plan for implementation of NHSO – 2000.
This Committee gathered data on load generating point and proposed short and long term plans by meeting stakeholders. This improved site conditions considerable thereby making the system operational. The Axle Road Regime was implemented on 1 June, 2019. However, due to concerns of the Industrial sector this has been put on hold since 20 June, 2019 for 90 days. Senator Fida Muhammad Khan raised issues of encroachment on Highway fringes by trucks, especially en route to Swat, Malakand Division. He asserted that action must be taken against this.
Chaired by Senator Hidayat Ullah, the meeting was attended by Senator Senator Dr. Jehanzeb Jamaldini, Senator Mir, Muhammad Yousaf Badini, Senator Dr. Ashok Kumar, Senator Muhammad Usman Khan Kakar, Senator Behramand Tangi, Senator Liaqat Khan Tarakai, Senator Fida Muhammad and senior officers from the Ministry for Communication, National Highway Authority along with all concerned.