Kerala Public Works Department
|Headquarters||Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India|
Kerala Public Works Department (KPWD) is a department under the government of the state of Kerala, India. It manages the construction and maintenance of civil structures owned by the government viz; government buildings, government owned hospitals (part of the public health system), roads, bridges etc. The KPWD was formed in 1956 following reorganization of states.
In Kochi, British Resident had a separate department called Public Works Commission to carry of construction works in British Cochin. The Kingdom had its own Marmath Department since 1825, as a separate agency to monitor construction of roads and palaces.
In 1901, the Kingdoms of Travancore and Kochi agreed to have an unified PWD Code and a permanent Joint commission of PWD Engineers in both sides were formed. The Travancore Maramath was headed by Chief Engineer, whereas it was a Diwan Peshkar (State Secretary) who head Kochi Marmath.
In 1949, when United State of Travancore-Cochin was formed, both the Maramath Departments were merged and renamed as Kerala PWD. Over the years the department has grown substantially and now has 5 Chief Engineers, 20 Superintending Engineers, 76 Executive Engineers, 289 Assistant Executive Engineers, 639 Assistant Engineers and other supporting staff.
The department is headed by a senior minister of cabinet rank. Presently G.Sudhakaran, representing Ambalapuzha Constituency is the minister for PWD. The Minister is assisted by Secretary for Public Works who heads the secretariat functions. As a technical department, it has a council composed of Chief Engineers and technical advisors along with nominated representatives from economical and social spheres.
The Public Works Department have 4 wings, each headed by a Chief Engineering having Cabinet Secretary ranking
- National Highways Wing, manages all National Highways located within territorial limits of the state. The Wing is responsible for carrying out construction and managing all activities as directed by Ministry of Surface Transportation of Government of India and liaisons with activities of NHAI
- Roads and Bridges Wing, manages all State Highways, local roads and city roads as well as bridges. The Wing is responsible for construction of new roads and bridges as well as maintenance of existing ones.
- Public Structures and Buildings Wing, manages all state owned buildings except those owned by other Government agencies. It has absolute right to construct all government buildings and structures. Most of the state guest houses and palaces are owned by PWD, though a few have been hand-over to Tourism department and Revenue departments.
- Operations & Projects Wing, supervises general operations of the department, especially new projects announced or under construction stage. The Vigilance department of PWD comes under this wing.
The Roads & Bridges wing and the Building & Local Works wing of the department have three circles each to supervise the execution of works at divisional level. Both the wings have one division at district level. The Buildings wing has also a Judicial circle exclusively for the supervision of construction works in Judicial sector. There is a Superintending Engineer for Electrical and an Executive Engineer for Electronics for advicing the related matters to the Chief Engineer Buildings Wing. The National Highway wing has three circles and eight divisions.
The execution of works is supervised and completed through the Executive Engineer. The construction works of roads, bridges, buildings, repairs, renovation and maintenance work thereof is looked after by each division under its territorial jurisdiction.
Under each division there will be three or four subdivisions to undertake actual execution of work.
The following organisations are functioning under the Department.
- Roads and Bridges Development Corporation of Kerala Ltd.
- Kerala Road Fund Board
- Road Infrastructure Company Kerala Limited
- Kerala State Construction Corporation Ltd.
- Pratheeksha Bus Shelters Kerala Ltd
- Ashwas Public Amenities Kerala Ltd
- Kerala Rapid Transit Corporation Ltd
PWD also have several Tourist Bungalows located in various important tourist destinations, available for tourists for daily rent, though the government has started the process of handing over several TBs to KTDC
- Kerala Public Works Department Official web site. 'About us'.
- The Hindu. 'Roadworks nearing completion'.
- The Hindu. 'State to shift to concrete roads'.
- Government of Kerala Official Website. 'Public Works Department'.