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Contractor using substandard rod in college building

Putting lives of students, teachers and others in danger, low-grade deformed bars are being used in the construction of a government educational institution in Juri upazila.

Education Engineering Department (EED) under the education ministry is spending Tk 15 crore to construct an academic building and an administrative building for Taimush Ali Technical School and College in Bhabanipur area of the upazila.

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Contractor firm Western Engineering and MN Enterprise (JV) started construction of the buildings in 2018 after getting work order from the authorities concerned. According to the work order, the contractor is supposed to use only 60-grade metal deformed bars (rods) in the structures of both buildings.

The deadline for completing the work was extended after the initial deadline expired in a year and a half.

Currently, work is underway to construct the roof above the second floor of the academic building and the roof above the third floor of the administrative building.

The use of lower-grade deformed bars was discovered by two EED officials — Deputy Assistant Engineer (DAE) Afzal Hossain, stationed in Barlekha upazila, and DAE Abu Sayed Mohammad Rahi, in Juri upazila — when they found a stockpile of around 12 to 13 metric tonnes of poor quality rods at the site during their visit on May 23.

The officials left the site after directing the contractor to remove the rods from the site without any delay. But during their visit on May 25, some low quality rods were found again, piled up on the second floor of the academic building.

Asked, Ataur Rahman, a supervisor for the contractor, claimed that his workers brought the low-grade rods inside the building by mistake when he had to step out of the construction site.

Abu Sayed Mohammad Rahi, the DAE in Juri upazila, confirmed that the contractor firm has been practising deception to use low-grade rods in the construction of the educational institution and it did not remove the substandard rods from the site despite their repeated directives.

Barlekha DAE Afzal Hossain said that after finding evidence of using poor quality rods at the site, they have already ordered the contractor to stop the work.

They informed their higher authorities of the anomaly and await instruction for further action to this effect, he added.

Reference