Bombay High Court imposes fine on NHAI-State Government on condition of Mumbai-Goa Highway

Bombay High Court

Mumbai: The Bombay High Court on Wednesday took strong objection to the very bad condition in some parts of the Mumbai-Goa Highway (NH-66). The High Court has also imposed a fine on NHAI-State Government. The court was hearing a contempt petition filed by a lawyer for non-compliance with his promise to fix potholes on the Mumbai-Goa highway. The petitioner had repeatedly taken refuge in court due to non-compliance with the instructions. The court said that a fine of Rs 50,000 will be imposed on the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) and the state government for negligence in the construction of the highway.

Acting Chief Justice of Bombay High Court and Justice Arif Doctor’s bench imposed the fine on Wednesday. It has been said that the highway was to be constructed by 2020, but potholes are yet to be filled in many parts of this route. The condition of this highway is pathetic. This is the third time that the petitioners have come to the court seeking implementation of the promise made by NHAI and the state government. The petitioner, advocate Owais Pechkar, personally informed the high court that the potholes were not fixed despite the court’s order.

The promise given in the court was not fulfilled, and the issue was raised in public interest litigation
Earlier, when a PIL was filed before the High Court to fix the potholes on the Mumbai-Goa Highway, NHAI gave an undertaking before the court that the issue of potholes does not need to be addressed as of now as the highway The road is being widened and potholes will be removed. The bench questioned NHAI as to why it did not apply for an extension of time, as the two-year period taken by NHAI has already ended in 2020.

Bombay High Court

The petitioner filed an affidavit and also put pictures of potholes
The counsel appearing for NHAI informed the court that it had floated tenders and allotted the work to a contractor. However, NHAI issued a show cause notice to the contractor for non-completion of the work and the contractor filed another application before the Delhi High Court. Advocate Pechkar also filed an affidavit before the court today in which he attached photographs of potholes on the Mumbai Goa highway which were taken on July 2, 2023. The bench directed the project director of NHAI and the superintending engineer of PWD to conduct the survey and file the report before the high court within four weeks.