New Delhi, Jan
17: The government on Friday awarded the
Jammu and Kashmir”s crucial Z-Morh Tunnel project, languishing for long after
it was abandoned, to APCO Amarnathji Tunnelway, which will be built at a cost
of Rs 2,379 crore, a senior official said on Friday.
The pact between
the National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation (NHIDCL) and
APCO Amarnathji Tunnelway was signed in presence of Road Transport and Highways
Minister Nitin Gadkari and Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways V
The Z-Morh Tunnel
along with the Zojila tunnel are designed to provide all-weather road
connectivity to Jammu and Kashmir parts which remain closed during the winters
due to heavy snowfall. The project is likely to be completed by 2023.
The project was
earlier allotted to Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services
(IL&FS), but the contractor had abandoned it after IL&FS Group faced
financial crisis. The work on it has begun in 2012.
Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation (NHIDCL) has awarded the Rs
2,379 crore Z-Morh Tunnel to APCO Amarnathji Tunnelway Pvt Ltd,” NHIDCL
Managing Director K K Pathak told PTI.
The Z-Morh Tunnel
project was awarded on build-operate-transfer (annuity) basis with concession
period of 20 years including 5 years of construction period to IL&FS but
due to financial crisis of IL&FS group of companies, the concessionaire
stopped all work w.e.f July 2018.
“This is an
old and ongoing project. Earlier it was with the Border Roads Organisation
(BRO) then it came to the Ministry and finally to NHIDCL. We started the work
when the IL&FS left the project and finally we retendered it and now the
new bidder is on board. This is a sort of private partnership project and is an
annuity based project,” he said.
NHIDCL will give an annuity of Rs 297 crore to the contractor every six months
and the concessionaire is mandated to complete the project in 3.5 years.
is in a very strategic, important place and it has got a lot of bearing in the
forthcoming Zojilla tunnel, which is also being taken by the NHIDCL. Together,
these two tunnels — the Z-Morh and Zozilla — will help in all-weather
connectivity in that area,” he said.
partially constructed structure, he said NHIDCL will ensure that it is not
damaged and a full-fledged work on the project will start after the snow melts
“By the time
the concessionaire will be fully mobilised. Today, the agreement has been
signed and the developer has to achieve the financial closure. Once that is
achieved we will start the work,” he said and added that both the tunnels
are contiguous to each other.
concessionaire is supposed to complete it by 2023. The developer has to achieve
the financial closure within next month,” he said adding that the cost and
the risk associated with the project is totally borne by the concessionaire.
would provide all-weather road connectivity to Sonamarg tourist spot in Jammu
and Kashmir which mostly remains closed during the winters due to heavy
snowfall in Gagenger area.
Bids for the
project were re-invited on June 24, 2019 with a TPC of Rs 2,378.76 crore on BOT
– build operate transfer – (Annuity) basis, he said.
iincludes construction, operation and maintenance of the tunnel including
approaches on NH-1 at Srinagar-Sonmarg-Gumri Road from 61 km to 89.30 km on
Design, Build, Finance, Operate and Transfer (DBFOT) Annuity basis.
The developer has
been awarded maintenance Period of 15 years from the completion date.
contract is being foreclosed in terms of the Ministry of Road Transport &
Highways ”Guidelines Principles for Resolution of Stuck National Highway
tunnel project was awarded on BOT (annuity) basis with concession period of 20
years including 5 years of construction period to IL&FS group.