With a view to ensure greater accountability and complete transparency in its functioning, the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) has undertaken a major initiative to monitor its infrastructure projects online.
According to sources, all construction work-related data are being updated in real time in the online measurement books. It has also linked payment of the contractors’ security amount with customer feedback to ensure quality of work.
Under the earlier system, engineers used to fill up the measurement book about the progress of a project sitting in the office. But now, the official has to be present at the construction site while updating the progress report. “His GPRS coordinates will also be registered along with the information entered by him. This simple procedure ensures that regular checking is undertaken at all stages of construction,” the source added. The contractors are also getting paid on the basis of the online report.
The tool, developed by the Authority’s IT Department, is first of its kind to be used by a government agency, according to officials. DDA recently made a presentation about it before the Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee.
In the past few years, the agency had been severely criticised for poor quality of construction. In a large number of housing complexes, the quality was extremely poor, while in some places, the civil work was not even completed.
Under the DDA norms, a contractor’s security amount is released two years after the work is over. “But now if a customer reports any construction defect or problem, the amount will be deducted from the security amount,” said a senior DDA official.