New Delhi: Union Minister for Road Transport & Highways, Shipping, Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation Nitin Gadkari said in Shillong today, that the Centre will spend 1 lakh 50 thousand crore rupees on improving National Highways in the North Eastern states.
This would include about Rs 17,000 Crore in Sikkim, Rs 48,221 Crore in Assam, Rs 20, 000 Crore in Nagaland, Rs 12,000 Crore Mizoram, Rs 22,000 Crore in Manipur, Rs 8,000 Crore in Tripura, Rs 10,000 Crore in Arunachal Pradesh and Rs 8,000 Crore in Meghalaya.
Gadkari was speaking in Shillong after dedicating to the nation the newly upgraded Jowai-Ratacherra section of NH-6 in Meghalaya today. The 102 km stretch of national highways has been two-laned with 10m wide carriageway of the paved shoulder at a cost of Rs 683 crore. It has three major bridges across Rivers Alpha, Lubha and Umproshung, along with 34 minor ones, 441 culverts and a 123-metre long tunnel at Sonapur village.
The national highway will provide better connectivity to Mizoram, Tripura and southwestern parts of Assam. Trucks and heavy vehicles coming from Guwahati will now be able to move smoothly in record time to Silchar. Travel time from Jowai to Ratacherra will be reduced from 4 hrs to 2.5 hrs.
The road passes through a coal/cement producing belt of the region, which is a lifeline to the landlocked states of NE. The new highway will also ensure fast movement of goods across the Barak valley, upliftment of bamboo industry, better employment opportunities, widespread economic development, and improved connectivity, all working to enhance the economy of Barak valley.
The total length of NH in the State of Meghalaya is 1,205 km, out of which State PWD and NHAI have 990 km and 215 km under their charge respectively. About 325 km of state roads have been declared as NHS in-principle, subject to the outcome of Detailed Project Report (DPR).
The state PWD is currently implementing 16 projects of the total length of 12 km and total cost Rs. 188.50 crore. The National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation Ltd (NHIDCL) is implementing one project of length 52 km and total cost Rs. 520 Crore. NHIDCL is also preparing DPR for 9 stretches of NH, having a total length of 644 km and an estimated civil cost of construction of Rs. 9663 Crore.
Gadkari is also doing an extensive review of each ongoing NH project in all the North Eastern states in the presence of stakeholders including state Chief Ministers, PWD Ministers, state and central government officials and contractors.