To improve the connectivity, safety, and sustainability of the urban and sub-urban road and drainage networks in Greater Imphal, and to enhance the road asset management capacity of Manipur's Public Works Department.
The proposed Project will support the rehabilitation, the upgrade (without capacity expansion), and the maintenance of 521 km-long secondary road infrastructure, bridges, and culverts in Greater Imphal. The civil works will consist of the reconstruction of existing asphalt-paved roads into rigid concrete roads, including road safety improvement, pedestrian walkway, street lighting and utility ducts. To address frequent drainage issues that affect the living conditions of local residents, continuous lined storm water drains and local side drains will be provided. The proposed Project will strengthen PWD's capacity to manage Manipur road asset and ensure the sustainability of the infrastructure network through enhanced human and financial maintenance resources.
Applicable Policy. AIIB's Environmental and Social Policy (ESP), including the Environmental and Social Standards (ESSs) and the Environmental and Social Exclusion List, apply to the Project. Initial environmental and social (E&S) due diligence has determined that ESS 1 (E&S assessment and management) applies to the assessment of E&S impacts of project activities. ESS 2 (involuntary resettlement) also applies as road improvement, and a limited amount of widening is expected to generate economic displacement and potentially limited physical displacement of title and non-titleholders. More than a third of the population of Manipur state is categorized as Scheduled Tribes, and they are present in Imphal city and are likely to be impacted by the Project; therefore, ESS 3 (Indigenous Peoples) is applicable. The Project has been assigned Category B as the nature of E&S impacts are limited, localized and reversible and can be managed or mitigated using good practice in an operational setting.
Environmental and Social Instruments. The main impacts will likely involve temporary economic displacement linked to the rehabilitation of the existing roads and a limited amount of land acquisition through the direct purchase of private land on a willing seller-willing buyer basis. A Resettlement Policy Framework (RPF) is being prepared outlining the principles, processes and entitlements, and livelihood restoration measures to guide the preparation of the Resettlement Plan (RP). Scheduled tribes are likely to be adversely impacted as a result of civil works and land acquisition. Moreover, to enhance the Project's benefits for vulnerable groups, including Scheduled Tribes, culturally appropriate meaningful stakeholder engagement and targeted small-scale community-level interventions are being planned and implemented. An Indigenous Peoples Planning Framework (IPPF) inclusive of small-scale community interventions is being developed to guide the preparation of the Indigenous Peoples Plan (IPP). Moreover, the client is preparing an Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (EISA) to gauge the scope and severity of impacts based on which mitigation measures, such as the RP and IPP, will be prepared in accordance with AIIB’s ESP and ESSs.
Environment. This project will rehabilitate and upgrade 521.55 Km of project length comprising of State highways, Major District Road, other district Roads and Internal Village Road/Local Street connectivity in the vicinity of Greater Imphal region to improve connectivity and access to basic services and livelihood opportunities. The physical works will involve upgrading of selected roads to improve as rigid pavement with provision of lined drain. The impacts of these activities on the environment are limited to the immediate vicinity of the road alignment. Since these are existing roads, no significant impacts on biodiversity are expected. These observations have been verified during the site visit carried out by the team of the Bank. The DPR consultant is leading environmental surveys including ambient air quality monitoring, noise monitoring, ground water testing, surface water testing, soil quality testing, micro meteorological monitoring, air pollution modelling, noise quality modelling, avenue trees survey (5345 trees surveyed).
Social. The Project requires the acquisition of a limited amount of private land in discrete locations, and most of the improvement work will occur on the existing road and within the existing right-of-way. Therefore, the Project is not likely to cause significant or irreversible impacts on Project-affected Peoples (PAPs) and local communities, and the nature of the effects will most likely be linked to temporary economic displacement and access restrictions. Nonetheless, there might be a disproportionate impact on vulnerable groups, including PWDs, Women, Scheduled tribes, the elderly, and those below the poverty line. Minimal physical displacement is envisaged for both title and non-titleholders. The adverse impacts can be managed through mitigation measures and good operational practice. Private land required for the Project will be mainly acquired through direct negotiation with landowners on a willing seller-willing buyer basis, preferably through direct purchase and following the provisions of the RFCTLARR Act, 2013. To mitigate the adverse impacts, an RPF is being developed and implemented. The RPF describes the approach, principles, and procedures that will be followed to manage and mitigate physical and economic displacement. The RPF is the precursor to preparing the final Resettlement Plan (RP). The RP will also encapsulate a Gender Action Plan to promote inclusivity and manage challenges related to GBV.
Indigenous Peoples. Approximately 35 percent of the total population in the state of Manipur is categorized as Scheduled Tribes based on the latest Census of 2011. There are about 34 scheduled tribes in the state of Manipur. Initial social assessment has identified the Kubai and Naga Tribal community members as likely to be impacted by the Project. An IPPF and, subsequently, an IPP inclusive of small-scale community interventions is being developed to enhance benefits and reduce the adverse impacts on Scheduled Tribes.
Consultation and Information Disclosure. Stakeholder engagement through public consultation and communication and Focus Group Discussion are being carried out with various stakeholders, including women and vulnerable groups, to prepare the safeguard documents and will be carried out throughout the project cycle. The concerns and aspirations of the communities raised during consultations will be incorporated to strengthen the Project's mitigation measures and design features. The ESIA will include a Stakeholder Engagement Plan (SEP) that assesses the output of the sessions carried out so far but also outlines future consultation and communication plan with various stakeholders.
Monitoring and Reporting. The Project Management Office (PMO) will be responsible for monitoring overall Project implementation, with support from the Project Implementing Units (PIUs). Progress will be monitored jointly by the Bank and the Public Works Department (PWD) through bi-annual progress. The reporting mechanism and processes will be discussed with the PMO during the appraisal stage.
Grievance Redress Mechanism. A Grievance Redress Mechanism (GRM) at the project level in accordance with the requirements of the ESP will be established and information regarding the GRM will be timely disseminated in an appropriate manner. A GRM will address workplace complaints and concerns. Communities and individuals who believe they are adversely affected by the Project can submit complaints to the project-level GRM for resolution. Disclosure of E&S information, including the GRM at the project level and the Project-Affected People's Mechanism (PPM) of AIIB, will be made available by the PMU, E&S information will be posted on the website of the PWD and AIIB in English and Manipuri (Meitei).
Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank
Senior Investment Operations Specialist – Transport
Republic of India
Dr. Prasanna V. Salian
Deputy Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance
Government of Manipur
Y. Joykumar Singh
Project Director, Externally Aided Projects, Public Works Department