We wonder why the quality of our roads is so poor while the cost of per kilometre road construction here is the highest in the world. A report by this daily on March 27 has revealed that approximately 1.5km road of the under-construction Barishal-Pathorghata highway has been carpeted with brick chips and low-quality stones. The result is, the road got damaged within days of the final carpeting. Although high quality stones should be used in carpeting the highways and the standard thickness of the carpeting must be 70mm, none of these was maintained in carpeting this part of the road. Unfortunately, this is not the first instance of such gross violation of road construction code. Many of the important highways of the country are also in a deplorable state because of the use of low-quality materials. For instance, the Dhaka-Chittagong highway was finished in December 2016 costing Tk 3,600, but the road started developing ruts within months of the work being completed. This happened because the road was constructed without following the standard construction procedure.
Needless to say, corruption and inefficiency of the authorities concerned are to blame for the deplorable condition of our roads. In this particular case, the company in charge of the construction work should be held accountable for their sub-standard work. The Roads and Highways Department and the ministry concerned also cannot avoid their responsibility in overseeing the work being done by this company. They should look into the matter and take stern action against those responsible. We cannot keep wasting public money for the benefit of some corrupt and inefficient officials.